April 16th, 2020

Egale recently partnered with Innovative Research Group (INNOVATIVE) to include LGBTQI2S communities in a national study on the impacts of COVID-19 and the needs of Canadians during this health crisis. The newly released report,  Impacts of COVID-19: Canada’s LGBTQI2S Community in Focus, uncovers alarmingly disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 on vulnerable LGBTQI2S communities across several priority areas including household finances, job loss, mental and physical health, overall quality of life, and more.

The survey results show a telling contrast between Canada’s LGBTQI2S community and the broader Canadian population. Although astonishing, the results are not unexpected. Below are some of the key findings;

  • More than half (52%) of Canada’s LGBTQI2S households have faced lay-offs or reduced employment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, compared to 39% of overall Canadian households.
  • The perceived negative impacts on mental health over time increase exponentially for LGBTQI2S people with nearly 60% of LGBTQI2S respondents reporting that they expect their mental health to be negatively impacted in the next 2 months compared to only 42% of the general public

Additionally, LGBTQI2S people are significantly more likely to have a chronic illness or physical disability, both of which come with many barriers and risks during a time of crisis. The report also shows that over time, the perceived or expected impacts on LGBTQI2S people rises at an exponentially higher rate than the average Canadian – in some areas there is nearly a 25% increase in perceived or expected negative impacts for particularly vulnerable LGBTQI2S people.

Every inch closer that we come to closing the data gap is one step forward towards a more inclusive Canada. Our community is facing critical needs that show the potential to worsen over time – now is the time to be looking at the problems that are on the horizon, not just for LGBTQI2S people, but for everyone.

This is only a starting point. The government needs to apply this timely research to decision making frameworks and policies that assist vulnerable LGBTQI2S communities across Canada.

The full research report is available in French and English here.

Helen Kennedy, Executive Director


National Survey Results: The Impact of COVID-19 on the LGBTQI2S Community | Egale


LGBTQ2 groups in Canada petition federal government on COVID-19 | Xtra


Coronavirus Is Exposing How the Health Care System Neglects LGBTQ People | VICE



‘Circus Of Books’ Will Examine The Bookstore That Became ‘The Centre Of The Gay Universe’ |


FDA’s New Blood Donation Guidelines for LGBTQ Men |  The Advocate


How is COVID-19 and social distancing affecting LGBTQ2 healthcare access? |



How To Help If You Think Someone Is Being Abused In Isolation At Home | Huffington Post 


100 Organizations Call on the Federal Government to Support Vulnerable LGBTQI2S People - Follow up

Egale was one of nearly 100 organizations that have signed an open letter to call on the Government of Canada to establish emergency supports for our community. The results are in - our community is disproportionately impacted during this time of crisis and it is critical that we are able to meet the immediate needs of LGBTQI2S people and prepare for sustainable long-term support.

Following a response from Minister Chagger to our letter, we are calling for a virtual meeting to address the immediate needs of LGBTQI2S people in Canada. 


Tips During COVID-19 

According to the findings of our latest national survey on the impacts of COVID-19 on Canada’s LGBTQI2S communities conducted in partnership with Innovative Research Group, COVID-19 has a disproportionate impact on LGBTQI2S people. The impacts are felt at alarming rates in areas of job security, health and wellbeing. Here are a few tips and resources to support employers and employees: 


Participate in a National Survey


Egale Canada Human Rights Trust
120 Carlton Street, Suite 217  | Toronto, Ontario M5A 4K2
416-964-7887 | donate@egale.ca

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Egale works to improve the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex and two-spirit (LGBTQI2S) people in Canada and to enhance the global response to LGBTQI2S issues. Egale will achieve this by informing public policy, inspiring cultural change, and promoting human rights and inclusion through research, education, and community engagement. Join us by supporting our work to improve the lives of all LGBTQI2S people.


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