Participation and Activity Limitation Survey

What is the Participation and Activity Limitation Survey?

The Participation and Activity Limitation Survey (PALS) is a national survey that gathers information about Canadian adults and children whose everyday activities may be limited because of a health-related condition or problem.

The PALS is an ongoing post-censal survey. The survey was previously completed in 2001.

The 2006 Participation and Activity Limitation Survey is conducted by Statistics Canada and is funded by Social Development Canada. It will draw a current profile of Canadians with disabilities and gather new information responding to new data needs that have emerged since the last survey.

What is the purpose of this survey?

The main purpose of this ongoing study is to determine the number of Canadians with activity limitations, what type of limitations they experience and most importantly, what barriers they might face.

Government and private organizations need to identify and address the barriers faced by Canadians with activity limitations in all areas of daily life, whether at home, at work, at school or in their communities.

Who is surveyed?

Approximately 48,000 people across all provinces and territories are being surveyed. The survey is conducted with two different groups: Canadian children aged 0-14 (not having reached their 15th birthday as of Census Day, May 16, 2006) who are identified as having a health or activity limitation, and Canadian adults aged 15 and over who are identified as having a health or activity limitation.

How was I selected to participate in this survey?

You were selected based on the two activity limitation questions on the 2006 Census of Population questionnaire. These questions identified people with participation and/or activity limitations who can provide more detailed information on the nature of their limitations.

Am I required to participate in this survey?

The Participation and Activity Limitation Survey is a voluntary survey. However, you were chosen to represent other Canadians of your age and sex who may experience a limitation in their daily activities, because of a long term health problem or condition that was indicated on the census. Since each selected person represents a large number of persons with an activity limitation, it is important that you participate.

A comprehensive portrait of Canadians with activity limitations is needed, and your participation will help provide that portrait. Your assistance is very important to ensure that the results are as complete and accurate as possible.

By participating, you are helping to ensure that decisions and policies from different levels of government (municipal, provincial and federal) as well as other organizations address the needs and concerns of Canadians with limitations.  It is an excellent opportunity for survey participants to voice their opinions.

Will the information I provide be kept confidential?

Yes. Statistics Canada recognizes the trust that respondents place in us to protect their data. That is why Statistics Canada follows strict rules to ensure the confidentiality of your information and your privacy.

The Participation and Activity Limitation Survey is conducted under the authority of the Statistics Act, which requires that the information you provide be kept confidential. No information which could identify you or your family will be provided to anyone without your permission.

Will participation in this survey affect my disability pension or any other monies I receive?

No, it will not. The purpose of this survey is to provide statistical information to researchers and government representatives in order to develop programs for persons with activity limitations. All answers are kept confidential and your information will not be shared with other organizations.

What kind of questions will I be asked?

You will be asked questions about certain activities that are part of your or your child’s daily routine, such as walking, standing or carrying an object, communicating, learning or other similar activities. These questions will identify people who are limited in their day-to-day activities due to a condition or health problem expected to last six months or more.

Who uses this information? Why is it important?

The PALS data are used by all levels of government for numerous programs including the development of employment programs, paying for aids and assistive devices such as wheel chairs and Seeing Eye dogs, support services, new social program development and health, leisure and recreation programs.

Information from this survey will be used to evaluate policies and programs that affect Canadians with activity limitations, and to help develop new policies and programs throughout Canada. 

When will the results be available?

The target date for the release of the data collected is January, 2008.

Results will be announced in Statistics Canada’s official release bulletin, The Daily as well as through the public library depository program (700 libraries across Canada).

Where can I get more information about the survey?

For more information on the Participation and Activity Limitation Survey, please contact us.

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