COVID-19 and visible minority groups’ perceptions of safety

Infographic: COVID-19 and visible minority groups’ perceptions of safety
Description: COVID-19 and visible minority groups’ perceptions of safety

COVID-19 and visible minority groups’ perceptions of safety

According to the 2016 Census, approximately 1 in 5 (22%) Canadians were designated as belonging to a visible minority group.

Visible minority groups generally report feeling less safe than the rest of the population. Feeling unsafe can negatively impact physical and mental health, general well-being, and social cohesion.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic

1 in 5 (21%) visible minority crowdsourcing participants perceived that harassment or attacks based on race, ethnicity or skin colour occurred sometimes or often in their neighbourhood, double the proportion among the rest of the population (10%).

% perceiving harassment sometimes or often

Black 26%
Korean 26%
Chinese 25%
Filipino 22%
Not a visible minority 10%

Visible minority participants were three times more likely (18%) than the rest of the population (6%) to perceive increases in the frequency of harassment or attacks based on race, ethnicity or skin colour.

% perceiving an increase in harassment since COVID-19 began

Chinese 30%
Korean 27%
Southeast Asian 19%
Black 12%
Not a visible minority 6%

27% of visible minority participants reported feeling very or somewhat unsafe when walking alone in their neighbourhood after dark, compared with 15% of participants who were not designated as visible minorities.

Among visible minority participants, more than 1 in 3 women felt unsafe when walking alone after dark, compared with 1 in 5 men.

% who feel unsafe

Korean 43%
Filipino 38%
Chinese 31%
South Asian 26%
West Asian 26%
Black 25%
Not a visible minority 15%

Source: Statistics Canada, Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians - Perceptions of Safety, May 12 to 25, 2020 (5323).

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