York Circle Lecture Series explores COVID’s impact on marginalized communities

A group of people wearing face masks

The 2022-2023 York Circle Lecture Series will resume on Jan. 29 at 10 a.m. with a virtual lecture that takes a deep dive into this year’s theme “The Pandemic: COVID’s Impact on Canada’s Health Care System.”

Professor Jennifer Steeves, the academic Chair for the 2022-23 lecture series, is the associate vice-president research (AVPR) and will moderate the event as some of York’s leading faculty members present on a variety of topics related to this year’s theme.

On Jan. 29, three speakers will share insights on the topic “Coping in Silence: COVID’s Impact on Marginalized Communities.” The event runs from 10 a.m. to noon.

The speakers and their presentations:

Michaela Hynie
Michaela Hynie

Michaela Hynie, professor at the Faculty of Health, Department of Psychology
“Resilience in the face of crisis—again: Sources of support and strength during COVID among Canadians with a recent history of forced displacement” 

Forcibly displaced people may be more affected by COVID than others, even when they have resettled in a new country. Hynie conducts research on communities experiencing social conflict, social exclusion, or forced displacement and migration and their access to health care. She will discuss the work she has done with recent newcomers to Canada and what we can learn about social policies and social networks and the impact on their well-being during a crisis in the face of limited resources and displacement. 

An image of Nazilla Khanlou
Nazilla Khanlou

Nazilla Khanlou, associate professor in the Faculty of Health, School of Nursing
“The Shadow Pandemic”: Gender-based violence during the COVID-19 pandemic”
Trigger warning: Some audience members may find certain aspects of the presentation on gender-based violence upsetting. This information is provided to describe the importance of the issue and its impacts.

Globally, violence against women has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic – UN Women has referred to this as the “Shadow Pandemic.” Khanlou’s research is based on mental health promotion among youth and women in multicultural and immigrant-receiving settings. She will draw from a project she led on the mental health impacts of gender-based violence on racialized women during the COVID-19 pandemic with a focus on implications for policy and practice, such as considering gender-based violence as a public health issue. 

Jonathan Weiss
Jonathan Weiss

Jonathan Weiss, professor in the Faculty of Health, Department of Psychology
“Coping and Resilience During the Pandemic for Families of Children with Developmental Disabilities”

Families of children with autism and other developmental disabilities faced unique challenges during the pandemic. Weiss’s research focuses on mental health in people with autism or intellectual disabilities, and their families, across the lifespan. His talk will examine the increased demand placed on caregivers and families of children with developmental disabilities as a result of COVID-19. He will explain the disproportionate negative mental health impacts these families face and the current lack of resources that are available to address their mental health needs.

Register for the event here.