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Media opportunity: Dalhousie University researcher studies disaster preparedness, response, and recovery in the homeless community of Halifax, Nova Scotia

Posted by Communications and Marketing on September 23, 2020 in News

During the COVID-19 global pandemic, those who find themselves homeless, or in precarious housing situations, are potentially among the most vulnerable to the spread of the virus.  

Individuals have been asked by federal and provincial governments under states of emergencies to “stay home” and “self-isolate” to stop the spread of COVID-19, but what happens when there is no home to go to? Cities across Canada have responded in different ways to address this issue, but as systems move to disaster recovery, responses need to move forward by avoiding returning to the status quo for addressing issues of homelessness. 

Dr. Jeff Karabanow, a Professor at Dalhousie University’s School of Social Work, is exploring the impacts of COVID-19 on individuals experiencing homelessness and the responses by both informal and formal systems to support the needs of these individuals in Halifax and how these systems will move forward in disaster recovery. His research will provide an in-depth understanding of the health and wellness of the homeless population; the processes involved in supporting homeless populations during a pandemic; and determine what has worked, what has not, and the changes that are needed. This will be the first-ever study of its kind in Nova Scotia, and will significantly contribute to the examination of how the pandemic has impacted homeless populations. 

Dr. Karabanow is able to provide perspective on how this research will assist governmental and non-governmental organizations in exploring the strengths and challenges involved in disaster work, and how to best support the homeless community’s post-disaster recovery processes and move forward.  


Media Contact:

Michele Charlton
Communications Advisor, Office of the Vice President Research and Innovation
Dalhousie University
Cell: (902) 222-2817