Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Canadian Children with Cognitive, Behavioural or Emotional Disabilities

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Credit: Government of Canada

The Government of Canada pleased to announce the release of a new data blog titled “Impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canadian children with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities.

Using data from Statistics Canada’s crowdsourcing questionnaire: Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians: Parenting during the Pandemic, 2020, this data blog highlights the experiences of parents of children aged 0 to 14 years with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities during the early response to the COVID-19 pandemic (questionnaires completed between June 9 and 22, 2020).

The data blog includes a snapshot of parents’ concerns related to their children’s general physical health, general mental health, loneliness or isolation, screen time, physical activity, school year/academic success and their family’s ability to manage. Comparisons are made to the experiences of parents with children that do not have a disability.

Key Findings:

  • Close to two-thirds of parents of children with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities expressed concerns about their children’s general mental health.
  • Almost two-thirds of parents who have children with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities were concerned about their children’s loneliness or isolation.
  • About 9 in 10 parents reported their children engaged in screen time on a daily basis; however, more parents (close to three-quarters) who have children with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities were concerned with the amount of screen time their children engaged in, compared to parents who have children with no disabilities.
  • Half of parents with children who have cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities reported their children engaged in physical activity daily and half reported they were very or extremely concerned about their children’s amount of physical activity.
  • More than half of the parents (59%) reported they were very or extremely concerned about their children’s school year success, although school aged children with cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities received more help to engage in learning activities related to school.
  • More parents with children who have cognitive, behavioural, or emotional disabilities are concerned about their family’s ability to manage compared to parents who have children with no disabilities.

If you have feedback or questions, please contact phac.chronic.publications-chronique.aspc@canada.ca.

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