New StatsCan survey asks parents how they're coping during the COVID-19 pandemic
TIMMINS -- While Timmins is experiencing another day with heat warnings, Statistics Canada is wondering if parents are losing their cool during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It's one of the questions the national statistical agency is asking parents with children under age 15 in a new online survey it launched on June 9.
"The more responses we get, the more that can tell us about things that are going on in particular provinces or particular groups," said Leanne Findlay, senior research analyst with Statistics Canada during an interview via Skype with CTV northern Ontario news.
"The more people that respond to this the better … in terms of what we can tell Canadians about what's going on during the pandemic."
Findlay helped develop the questionnaire, which she says only takes about five minutes to fill out.
Other general questions ask about how families have been coping during the pandemic; what activities they've been doing, and if they have any children with special needs.
Gillies Lake beach is a favourite place in Timmins to take children for a swim, and one mother said Thursday was the first time she's had a chance to spend some quality time with her two young boys.
Andreanne Lacombe said when the pandemic began, she had a bit of anxiety. Declared an essential worker, she said she had to send her kids to be with family during the week and she only got to see them on weekends.
"But I was telling myself maybe it's a good time to save up money and maybe later on have a nice vacation with my family," said Lacombe.
Lindsay Deschamps, another mother of young children, said she's coping well. She was also at the beach to let her toddler splash around.
"He is in the perfect age group ... He's really flexible and I think it took about two to three weeks to kind of get a new schedule."
The last day to do the survey is June 22. Findlay says so far, the response has exceeded her expectations.
She also encourages more parents to participate. She says the more information that's received, the more needs can be met during and after the pandemic.
"Knowing the general responses of Canadians really helps organizations," Findlay said. "It helps policy makers and other government departments to really have a sense of what's going on. I think sometimes we need those big numbers of people responding to things in order to give us a better picture of the Canadian population."
Findlay also said sometimes people just want to know they're like other people.
The survey can be found on the StatsCan website and she said an analysis will be released in early July so people can use the information as soon as possible.