Victoria Foundation’s annual Vital Signs report has broken down how different demographics view the region based on a survey of more than 2,500 respondents.
One gap revealed those with smaller incomes feel less included in the community. Seventy-four per cent of those who make more than $80,000 said they feel included compared to 56 per cent of those who earn less than that amount.
Greater Victoria has consistently enjoyed lower unemployment and a higher employment rate than both B.C. and Canada over the last five years, though 2019 was an outlier as the percentage of locals with jobs fell slightly below the other jurisdictions.
Residents gave the overall economy a C+ in 2021, but even though women were employed at a rate just below the regional average last year, men were still more likely to give the economy a D grade. Women are also feeling more stressed about their personal finances than men.
One of the largest discrepancies in the survey sheds light on how younger people are worried about their bank accounts. Under a third of respondents over 30 answered that they’re always or often stressed about their personal finances, but that jumped to 62 per cent for those aged 18 to 30.
BIPOC individuals were less likely to give the region top marks compared to Caucasians when it came to their overall quality of life and their access to nutritious food, health care and education. BIPOC residents are also more likely to feel unsafe because of their overall identity (race, religion, etc.) and stress over finances.
Caucasian respondents were more likely to agree that they feel respected, included and accepted for who they are.
About three in four of those surveyed agree there should be more opportunities to support cross-cultural education and awareness, but women and those under the age of 30 are more likely to think so.
Men, those over 65, those who make more than $50,000 and Caucasians were more likely to answer never when asked how often they feel out of place because of their religion, ethnicity, skin colour, culture, race, language, accent, disability, gender identity or sexual orientation.
Even though women feel more connected to their community, men were more likely to give Greater Victoria the top grade.
Men in the region are more likely than women to say they have excellent physical and mental health. In terms of accessing care for mental and physical health, men and those making more than $80,000 were most likely to give the region top marks. More than half of all respondents said that access to care is poor or below average.
Men were more likely to say Victoria is excellent when it comes to home ownership, the availability of affordable rentals, access to quality education, post-secondary school affordability, safety, their ability to afford necessities, accessing affordable child care, transportation and their wage in relation to the cost of living.
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