COVID-19’s effects on the healthcare and social assistance workforce in Canada: Gendered employment loss and wage inequality 2020-2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed a significant burden on healthcare and social assistance workers across Canada. Over a year and a half, healthcare and social assistance workers have faced ongoing outbreaks and long term impacts on both health systems and their own wellbeing. Women hold over 80.4% of total healthcare and social assistance jobs in Canada, putting them disproportionately at risk of both the primary (viral infection) and secondary (mental health etc.) effects of COVID-19.
Our analysis is based on data and statistics from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey. This report compares data for 2019 and 2020. The employment data is for women and men aged 15 years and over. Employment numbers include both fulltime and part-time workers. The wage data is for the full-time healthcare and social assistance workers. Our focus on women and men, as opposed to diverse gender identities, reflects the limited availability of data segregated by binary gender identities.