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University of St Andrews leads the UK’s largest survey of ethnic and religious minority people during Covid-19

The UK’s first and largest survey on the impact of Covid-19 on the lives of ethnic and religious minority people, led by the University of St Andrews and the Centre on the Dynamics of Ethnicity (CoDE), is launched today (Tuesday 16 February 2021).

The Evidence for Equality National Survey (EVENS) aims to transform the policy landscape, inform work and campaigns for racial justice, and create a data legacy by providing robust evidence on a comprehensive range of issues facing ethnic and religious minority people during the pandemic.

Among the topics to be surveyed are employment, finance, education, economic wellbeing, health, housing, policing, identity, and experiences of discrimination and racism.

In partnership with the Centre on the Dynamics of Ethnicity (CoDE), the University of Manchester, and the University of Sussex, EVENS is being conducted by Ipsos MORI and has been translated into 13 languages. The 30-minute survey will target the full range of ethnic and religious minority groups, including Gypsy, Traveller and Roma people and Jewish communities, across England, Scotland and Wales, and will run for three months until May 2021.

Dr Nissa Finney, EVENS’ Lead and Reader in Human Geography at the University of St Andrews, said: “Disadvantages of ethnic and religious minorities have been highlighted and exacerbated by the period of austerity, followed by the Covid-19 pandemic, meaning there is an urgent need to act to mitigate growing inequalities. EVENS will give us a unique and authentic representation of the lives of ethnic and religious minority people in Britain during the current crisis.

“When published, EVENS will help place ethnic inequalities and racism firmly on the political and policy agenda in an enduring manner. The data will be freely available and can be used by anyone, from our VCSE partners, activists and politicians to policymakers, campaigners, NGOs and Experts by Experience in the UK. As well as showing us what the key problems of disadvantage and inequality are for particular groups, we want people to be able to evidence the inequalities and how they should be addressed.”

Professor James Nazroo, Deputy Director of CoDE and EVENS’ Co-Lead, said: “This ground-breaking survey will help shift the narrative on ethnic and religious inequalities in modern Britain. We will be asking how your life has been affected by the pandemic. We will ask about work and health, caring and housing. We will ask about experiences of racism and discrimination. There is an urgency as practitioners and policymakers are crying out for robust and comprehensive scientific evidence that they can use to understand and address the inequalities faced by ethnic and religious minority people. EVENS will provide that evidence.”

EVENS is partnering with a diverse range of voluntary and community sector organisations, including Operation Black Vote (OBV), the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), The Ubele Initiative, The Stuart Hall Foundation, EYST (Wales), the Migrants’ Rights Network, BEMIS (Scotland), the Race Equality Foundation and Business in the Community, who will assist with the recruitment drive.


Information on how to participate in EVENS

Take part in the online survey.

To participate via telephone

To take part or to ask for further information via the telephone you can call a freephone number: 0808 1296800 (a voicemail retrieval service, you can leave your contact details and you will be called back with help to answer your query or to conduct the registration survey to see if you are eligible for the main survey).

To participate in a language other than English

Participants can take part in EVENS online or via telephone in the following 13 non-English languages: Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi: Gurmukhi, Punjabi: Urdu, Romanian, Somali, Turkish, Urdu and Welsh.

For full details about participation, visit the survey information page.

EVENS will cover the following subjects:

  1. Demographic characteristics. Including age, gender, sexual orientation, household composition, tenure and type of accommodation, marital status.
  2. Socioeconomic characteristics. Including current economic activity, number of hours worked, employment characteristics related to Covid-19 (such as being a key worker), personal and household income, use of benefits, training and education, and financial worries.
  3. Ethnicity and migration. Including ethnic and religious identity, country of birth, year of arrival to UK, nationality, feelings of belonging to England/Scotland/Wales.
  4. Racism and discrimination. Including experiences of racism and discrimination, anticipation of discrimination, and coping mechanisms.
  5. Health. Including general health, long-term illnesses, mental health, social isolation, Covid-19 related symptoms, Covid-19 vaccination and experiences accessing the NHS.
  6. Black Lives Matter. Including participation in protests, support of movement, and opinion of the impact of BLM on society.
  7. Caring and volunteering. Including caring activities not related to Covid-19, Covid-19 related caring, volunteering in the community, and receipt of care.
  8. Social cohesion. Including feelings of belonging to neighbourhood and to local area.
  9. Attitudes towards the police. Including confidence and trust in the police, experience of stop and search, being stopped in relation to lockdown, and overall sense of police activity in the community.
  10. Political participation. Including trust in government and politicians, political interest, and political affiliation.

Participants who complete the survey in full will receive a gift voucher.

Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office.

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