Australia’s most trusted (and least trusted) professions are…

The idea of trust is a strange one. Most of us are willing to place our lives in the hands

The idea of trust is a strange one. Most of us are willing to place our lives in the hands of a doctor, but wouldn’t believe a word an insurance salesman says.

Which is why the annual Roy Morgan Image of Professions Survey is always so fascinating: it’s a glimpse into how our minds work; how willing we are to judge a person’s trustworthiness based on their work.

Nurses take out the top position, which they have held without fail for the 22 years since they were introduced to the survey.

Car salesmen, on the other hand, have ranked at the bottom for the past 35 years.

While the first and last places are far from surprising, there have been some interesting changes from previous years.

  1. Nurses
  2. Pharmacists
  3. Doctors
  4. Engineers
  5. School teachers
  6. Dentists
  7. Police
  8. High Court judges
  9. State Supreme Court judges
  10. University lecturers
  11. Accountants
  12. Public servants
  13. Lawyers
  14. Ministers of Religion
  15. Public opinion pollsters
  16. Bank managers
  17. Financial planners
  18. Directors of public companies
  19. Business executives
  20. Talk-back radio announcers
  21. Newspaper journalists
  22. TV reporters
  23. Federal MPs
  24. State MP
  25. Stockbrokers
  26. Union leaders
  27. Insurance brokers
  28. Real estate agents
  29. Advertising people
  30. Car salesmen

Some of the most interesting changes are the result of recent scandals in the news. Ministers of Religion dropped four points and hit a record low.

Social commentator Bernard Salt told The New Daily this was a likely the result of the recent royal commissions into corruption and sexual abuse.

“It’s a shame because I think the overwhelming majority of religious ministers do a great job. But unfortunately the behaviour of some over the years has tarnished the entire profession.”

Bank managers have also fallen considerably from Australia’s graces.

Meanwhile, police, engineers and university lecturers have all risen this year.

Mr Salt said the high rankings for health professionals made perfect sense.

“At the top of the list has got to be the professions that you’re entrusting your life to, or your wellness to,” he said.

Do you agree with these rankings? Which profession do you see as the most trustworthy? And which do you trust the least?