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Ethnicity

Overview


The experience of racism that is institutionalized, personally mediated and/or internalized impacts social and economic conditions, and ultimately health, for Canadians of colour. Ethnicity being a social determinant of health, heavily influences one’s likelihood of being injured, and receiving healthcare to treat injuries.


Ethnicity and Injury 

Often, due to previous policies excluding an intersectional lens, certain ethnic groups are affected, leaving them susceptible to certain health issues, and injuries.  This can be due to multiple factors such as, workplace conditions, housing, socioeconomic status, accessibility, and more.


For example, evidence has demonstrated that members of minority groups experience a higher number of workplace related injuries than those who are Caucasian. Some reasoning has suggested that this is due to the availability of certain jobs dependent on one's race and ethnicity (Seabury, Terp, & Boden, 2017).


However, beyond the example involving workplace-related injuries, health inequities exist for marginalized populations which place them at risk for injury caused by motor-vehicle collisions, violence, suicide, brain injuries, and poisoning. While also experiencing differences in access to healthcare. For instance, during the COVID-19 pandemic, when Black individuals had health insurance or other ways to access care, they were less likely to receive the same standards of care as those who are Caucasian. Access to care can thus influence one's likelihood of injury related disability or mortality (Baker, Chinaka, & Stewart, 2021).

In effort to create equitable policy to reduce the risk of injury for marginalized populations, policymakers from all races and ethnic groups must be involved in their development. Moreover, research to call attention to such inequities needs to be conducted to provide an accurate representation of the health realities of minority groups around Canada. In the near future, policy and research need to be aligned with the social determinants of health to create an equitable Atlantic Canada and work toward an injury free country.


Seabury, S. A., Terp, S., & Boden, L. I. (2017). Racial and ethnic differences in the frequency of workplace injuries and prevalence of work-related disability. Health Affairs, 36(2), 266-273.

Baker, C., Chinaka, O., & Stewart, E. C. (2021). The time is now: why we must identify and address health disparities in sport and recreation injury. Injury epidemiology, 8(1), 1-7.


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