Ongoing Projects and Research on COVID-19 in the field of Criminology

Chris Bruckert & Emma McKenna

COVID-19, Social Safety Nets, and Sex Work in the Capital Region

This project investigates the struggles, resilience, and resistance of sex workers in the Ottawa-Gatineau area during the COVID-19 pandemic. In collaboration with POWER, this bilingual research project will assess barriers to sex workers’ ability to access social safety nets. While much has been written about the Criminal Code’s effect on sex workers’ rights, there is an absence of scholarship that focuses on more mundane public policies, for instance tax law and Employment Insurance (EI) regulations. Establishing sex workers’ access to the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and EI in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic will begin to address this gap and inform future policy and activism.

Alex McClelland

Sociolegal researcher and Banting Postdoctoral Fellow Alex McClelland launched the Policing the Pandemic Mapping Project on April 4, 2020 "to track and visualize the massive and extraordinary expansions of police power in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic and the unequal patterns of enforcement that may arise as a result."

Policing the Pandemic

Justin Piché

The Prison Pandemic Partnership is a research and advocacy initiative led by Kevin Walby (University of Winnipeg | Centre for Access to Information and Justice), Justin Piché (University of Ottawa | Criminalization and Punishment Education Project), and Abby Deshman (Canadian Civil Liberties Association), which examines the impact of COVID-19 on jails, prisons, and penitentiaries across the country. Funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) through their Partnership Engage grant, the initiative has tracked COVID-19 cases linked to these congregate settings and generated unpublished government records on the pandemic response behind bars through access to information requests. To date, team members have commented on the impact of COVID-19 on imprisonment in over 200 media stories and have published a total of six op-eds in Policy Options, The Hill Times and the Ottawa Citizen based on their research. Forthcoming academic papers stemming from the initiative’s work are forthcoming in the Canadian Journal of Sociology, Criminologie, and the 2021 Canadian Yearbook of Human Rights.

See some of Professor Piché's media interviews on the list of COVID-related media interventions at FSS

Alexis Hieu Truong

This action research project, funded by a Partnership Engage Grant (SSHRC), aims to better define and address the social and organizational factors surrounding the experience of emotional difficulties faced by community service providers working with highly marginalized populations in the context of the social and health crisis related to COVID-19. This project is a partnership between Professor Katharine Larose-Hébert (Université TÉLUQ), Professor Isabelle Le Pain (Université Sherbrooke), Professor Alexis Hieu Truong of uOttawa, the Regroupement pour l’aide aux itinérants et itinerants de Québec (RAIIQ, the Alliance des groupes d’intervention pour le rétablissement en santé mentale (AGIR) and the Regroupement des organismes de personnes handicapées de la région 03 (ROP 03).

Also Read