Albuquerque, NM - The 2015 Garrity Perception Survey (GPS) results reveal New Mexico residents’ digital media use is on the rise, traditional media as a news source is declining and one-third of the state’s residents think the economy is worse off than two years ago. This year marks the fifth annual survey to be released by New Mexico based public relations firm, The Garrity Group. The survey covers how New Mexico residents access news and information, favorability of industries, trusted professions and, new this year, the level of stress burdened by New Mexicans as well as how they feel about the state and the economy. 

The 2015 GPS edition was the first to explore New Mexico residents’ opinion on the economic environment in the state. Survey insights suggest that New Mexicans are frustrated by the slow economic rebound from the Great Recession. Only one-fifth of state residents say the economy is now better off than it was two years ago, while one-third say the state’s economy is worse off. They are, however, optimistic toward the economic future; 42 percent of New Mexicans feel that the state’s economy will be stronger two years from now, while only 16 percent say the economy will be weaker.

Additionally, there is no doubt the economy has played a role in the volatility in the trust of federal government officials. In 2011, distrust was at 37 percent; in 2015, the number of residents who do not trust federal government officials rose to 46 percent. However, news for some important state and local officials was much brighter.

Plagued by negative stories in every region of the state in 2013 and 2014, police officers dropped to their lowest level of trust during the 2014 survey (37 percent).  Tom Garrity, Garrity Group president says, “Law enforcement has clearly been effective at community engagement and keeping a relatively low profile because now 54 percent of residents trust police officers.”

One of the many standout insights within the GPS ‘15 according to Garrity was the rising prominence of Internet news sources: “Digital media is making a slow and steady increase as a news and information source in New Mexico. While overall access of digital sites for news still pales in comparison to traditional sources, all digital sites are increasing in popularity.”  Television, radio, and newspaper sites have been losing traction while social media, blogs, and Internet news sites have been steadily increasing since 2011.

New Mexico residents carry more stress than the national average.  Using a 10-point scale, where 10 is a great deal of stress and 1 is little or no stress, the average level reported by residents is 5.2.  In comparison the average level of stress nationally is 4.9 when using the same 10-point scale (2014 American Psychology Association study).  Residents in the Northwest have the highest level of stress while people living in North Central New Mexico report the lowest level of stress.

These are just a few examples of the important research that the Garrity Perception Survey provides to help us identify and understand what our clients’ customers’ value, who they trust, and how they spend their time.

The Garrity Group commissioned Albuquerque-based Research & Polling to conduct the Garrity Perception Survey. A total of 400 adult New Mexico residents were interviewed by telephone (both landlines and cell phones) for the 2015 edition, providing a 95 percent level of confidence. For more information and analysis or to request a copy of the Garrity Perception Survey 2015, visit

Download your copy of the 2015 Garrity Perception Survey.

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