An online survey found ‘many residents struggled to secure cleaning supplies during pandemic. (Black Press Media Staff)

Sidney survey finds ‘many’ residents struggled to secure cleaning products during pandemic

Survey identifies health as top personal concern, state of the economy as top community concern

A survey by the Town of Sidney says “many” residents reported difficulties procuring products such as sanitizer, general household products and food during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the online survey through SurveyMonkey, residents also reported, albeit it to lesser degrees, difficulties procuring medical goods and medications; home improvement products; office and stationary supplies; and other items.

“When asked if there were any items or services they would like to purchase or obtain locally, but can’t currently find, the majority of items indicated were cleaning products, masks and personal protective equipment, clothing, electronics and medical services,” it reads.

The survey, open between June 18 and July 5 with results officially before council Monday touched on a range of issues, drawing 618 submitted surveys with individuals able to skip questions. Staff consider 618 an “excellent response” rate with 73 per cent of respondents saying that they live in Sidney, 17 per cent in North Saanich, seven in Central Saanich, and three per cent in other municipalities.

With 564 individuals responding to a question about whether they experienced increased difficulty in obtaining any goods or supplies since the COVID-19 outbreak, 329 reported difficulties obtaining cleaning products such as sanitizer.

Almost 200 respondents (190) reported difficulties securing general household products, while 144 respondents said they struggled to secure food — so just over a quarter of submitted responses.

RELATED: Pandemic hurt almost eight out of 10 Sidney businesses, says survey

The survey also asked respondents to identify what they considered primary concerns for both themselves, as well as their community.

Residents listed physical health; mental health; safety; investments; as well as food and nutrition as the top five concerns, with health leading the way among the 573 individuals who responded to that question, with each being able to choose up to five issues.

“When asked the same question about their top concerns for their community, the top five concerns listed in order are the economy, mental health, employment, safety, and physical health,” it reads.

Other concerns, according to the staff report, include education; childcare; housing and utilities; as well as individual responses such as lost social and recreational opportunities; missing family visits; access to doctors and medical services; viability of businesses; increase in homeless population; and inconsistent community take-up of physical distancing and health precautions.

Within this context, it is important to note that 35 per cent of respondents said they have pre-existing health conditions that cause them to be more vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19, while 65 per cent indicated otherwise. Nearly half (45 per cent) of respondents said that they were retired, with 34 per cent working full time, eight per cent part-time and eight per cent self-employed.

These sociological data may also explain why just one out of 10 respondents accessed financial support. According to the survey, 88 per cent indicated that they had not applied for any personal funding assistance related to the pandemic, while 12 per cent that they had applied for funding.

While individuals circumstances vary, retirees can generally count on a steady, reliable source of support, thereby making it less likely that they would apply for support designed to extraordinary circumstances.

Sidney conducted the survey after the municipality’s emergency operations centre (EOC) found in April that a survey of residents “would be a key component” in gathering information on how the COVID-19 pandemic was affecting the local community.

According to the report, EOC staff drafted the survey questions with “consideration given to what information would be helpful in shaping pandemic response and recovery actions to support the community.”

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 year

Need a doctor in Sooke? You may be in luck

In anticipation of recruiting more doctors, medical clinic accepting applications for a waitlist

View Royal fire chief calls for realistic solutions to ‘mess’ at Thetis Lake

Emergency crews harassed while extinguishing brush fire, rescuing drunk 15-year-old during long weekend calls

Suspect in custody after early morning break and enter at downtown Victoria business

Woman located leaving Johnson Street with stolen merchandise, police say

Airlines dispute Dr. Henry’s claim they ‘very rarely’ give accurate COVID contact tracing info

Air Canada, WestJet say they provide names and contact information

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

B.C. fish harvesters receive long-awaited details on pandemic benefits

Applications to the $470-million federal assistance programs will open Aug. 24

B.C. fish harvesters receive long-awaited details on pandemic benefits

Applications to the $470-million federal assistance programs will open Aug. 24

Abbotsford mom worried about her two kids in Beirut following explosion

Shelley Beyak’s children were abducted by their dad in 2018

POLL: Should it be mandatory to wear masks when out in public?

B.C. is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of cases of… Continue reading

Young Canadians, hospitality workers bear the brunt of mental strain in 2020: report

A study by Morneau Shepell points to economic uncertainty in the pandemic as the cause for angst

Health Canada recalling more than 50 hand sanitizers in evolving list

Organization says to stop using products listed, and to consult a health-care professional

Most Read