Food bank use and users: the impact of covid-19 and public policy responses
This research will build upon our research with Hamilton Food Share (HFS) data that was funded by an SSHRC Partnership Engage Grant awarded in 2019. Prior to that research, Canadian analyses relied on surveys with small samples and self-selection bias. Furthermore, none of these surveys were able to identify the impact of any public policies. Policy analysis requires the use of longitudinal surveys or administrative data.
The objectives of this SSHRC Grant Application are the following: (1) Acquisition and cleaning of HFS data from 2019 through 2021. Linking of the 2019-2021 HFS data with the 2014-2018 HFS data currently in SEAL and with information on the total low-income population in Hamilton from the 2016 and 2021 Canadian Censuses. (2) Analysis of the socioeconomic characteristics of food bank users and their placement within the poverty spectrum over a seven-year period. Particular emphasis will be placed upon the impact on food bank households of both COVID-19 and the policy responses to COVID-19. (3) Promotion and facilitation of access to HFS data among interested researchers and (4) Initiation of discussions with other foodbank networks in Canada about incorporating their data into SEAL.