Immediate and Long-term Health, Education, and Employment Impacts of COVID-19 on Vulnerable Groups

Michelle Maroto, University of Alberta and David Pettinicchio, University of Toronto

What can governments do right now and over the coming years to mitigate the immediate and long-term economic effects of COVID-19 for the most vulnerable groups in Canadian society? People with disabilities and chronic illnesses are among the most affected by the very strategies taken to combat the spread of COVID-19. Consequences are dire given that people with disabilities already experience some of the highest rates of economic insecurity and poverty in Canada. This mixed-methods project incorporates a national online survey and set of virtual in-depth interviews to better understand how members of these vulnerable groups are managing their health and economic wellbeing. Specifically, this project seeks to (a) describe the measures people with disabilities and health conditions in different provinces have taken in response to COVID-19; and (b) analyze how these measures are affecting health, education, and employment right now and throughout the course of the pandemic. Our project brings direct quantitative and qualitative evidence to bear on the ways in which Canadians are making sense of government measures to lessen the effects of COVID-19 and how these measures may unintentionally undermine the social, health and economic wellbeing of already disadvantaged groups down the line.

Co-investigator: David Pettinicchio, University of Toronto

Funding Agency: SSHRC

Research Status (as of October 27, 2020): Research complete, preparing to publish/present

Contact: Michelle MarotoandDavid Pettinicchio


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