Politicians seen as least trustworthy professions

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson attends during the Rome MED Mediterranean Dialogues forum in Rome, Italy on Dec 1, 2016.
Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson attends during the Rome MED Mediterranean Dialogues forum in Rome, Italy on Dec 1, 2016.PHOTO: REUTERS

Only one in five members of the public think politicians were largely telling the truth during the EU referendum campaign, showing that trust in politicians is "approaching rock bottom", researchers have said.

In contrast, nurses were found to be the most trustworthy professionals, in their first appearance in the annual Ipsos Mori survey, reported British news outlet The Independent.

Politicians have sunk even lower in the public's estimation in the year that brought the Brexit vote, the survey found.

The elected representatives are now trusted to tell the truth by 15 per cent of the public, a drop of 6 per cent from last year, according to the report published on Sunday (Dec 4).

An Ipsos Mori poll just before June's referendum found nearly half of Britons believed politicians from either side were lying while 19 per cent thought they were mostly telling the truth.

The report said: "One rare point of agreement between Leave and Remain voters is that neither of the campaigns covered themselves in glory; between them they demonstrated most of the characteristics that turn voters off.

"Politicians in Westminster in particular have much work to do to start reconnecting with voters and demonstrating that they have priorities other than getting their own viewpoints across and ignoring debate."

Nurses were trusted to tell the truth by 93 per cent of people, while doctors trailed behind by 91 per cent, according to the poll of 1,019 adults in October.