The COVID-19 pandemic is dramatically altering how people live, work and meet their critical needs. In order to provide snapshots of these impacts over time, CARICOM launched a second round of the Caribbean COVID-19 Food Security and Livelihoods Impact Survey.
Implemented by the World Food Programme, the short online survey was circulated via social media, email and text message. This summary analyses data collected from 22 June to 1 July 2020. It builds on findings from the first survey implemented in April 2020.
• People throughout the Caribbean continue to experience disruptions to their livelihoods. Over half of respondents reported impacts to pursuing their livelihoods.
• Compared to April, while there is better access to markets, there appears to be greater job loss, higher food prices and poorer food consumption.
• The survey results coupled with poverty data suggest that 2.9 million people are now estimated to be food insecure compared to 1.2 million in April; however, the number of severely food insecure remains steady at slightly more than 400,000.
• Job loss and reduced income were reported by 7 out of 10 respondents. The main worry of respondents is unemployment, followed by meeting food and other essential needs.
• Most respondents have changed their diet, with nearly one-third skipping meals, eating less or going a day without eating.
• Detrimental impacts to income and food consumption appear more widespread among low-income families, as well as those responding in Spanish, single parents and mixed households.
• More respondents could consistently access markets compared to April. While key items are usually available in stores, 78% of respondents indicated increases in food prices.
• How people shop has not returned to normal. Lower income respondents mainly report buying cheaper/less preferred food, while higher income ones more commonly purchased in bulk.
• The amount of time spent on childcare and domestic work has increased since the pandemic began, particularly for women.
• While the survey contributes to a better overview of impacts, the data is not representative, and the use of a web-based questionnaire limits inputs from those without connectivity.
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