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Study: Impact of economic consequences of COVID-19 on Canadians' social concerns

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Released: 2020-05-28

COVID-19 has caused profound economic and social disruption.

Millions of people have lost their job since mid-March and almost one-fifth (17%) of Canadians aged 25 to 64 report that the COVID-19 pandemic has seriously affected their ability to meet their financial obligations or essential needs such as buying medicine.

A new study explores how the current economic challenges brought about by COVID-19 and faced by many Canadians are associated with higher levels of concern about family and social stability.

For example, almost half (48%) of those who reported major challenges in meeting their financial needs expressed "high" or "very high" levels of concern about family tension surrounding their confinement amid physical distancing measures to contain COVID-19 (see note to readers). This was over double the rate of those who did not anticipate any major financial repercussions from COVID-19 (21%).

Canadians reporting major financial challenges (61%) were almost twice as likely as those not reporting financial challenges (32%) to express "high" or "very high" levels of concern about civil disorder.

Elevated levels of concern about the repercussions of COVID-19 were also reported by other groups of Canadians, such as immigrants and those without a postsecondary degree.

For example, immigrants were over twice as likely as the Canadian-born to express concern about the social ramifications of the pandemic or the possibility of family violence.

Almost 60% Canadians without a postsecondary degree expressed "high" or "very high" levels of concern about the repercussions of COVID-19, over double the rate among postsecondary school graduates.

  Note to readers

The data used in this release are from a new online panel survey: the Canadian Perspectives Survey Series (CPSS). From March 29 to April 3, 2020, over 4,600 respondents from all 10 provinces participated in the CPSS. Because the CPSS targets a subsample of the Labour Force Survey (LFS) sample, a number of variables (age, sex, highest level of education, place of birth) were drawn from the LFS data. All of the differences presented in this release between the population subgroups are significant at the 5% level.


The study "Impact of economic consequences of COVID-19 on Canadians' social concerns" is now available as part of the series StatCan COVID-19: Data to Insights for a Better Canada (Catalogue number45280001).

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; or Media Relations (613-951-4636;

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