Family Well-being and Health

Wrapping up 2022, Oregonians rate their household family’s well-being related to health and feeling connected to one another.

From December 15-23, 2022, the Oregon Values and Beliefs Center conducted a statewide survey of Oregonians’ including a brief assessment of their household family’s well-being. A description of the methodology used for the research is provided below.

The question numbers in this document correspond with the accompanying annotated questionnaire. Due to rounding, the percentages reported below may not add to 100% or compare exactly to the percentages for the same question in the annotated questionnaire or tabs.

Included below for selected questions are noteworthy subgroups variations for BIPOC/white, age, urban/rural, education, gender, and households with and without children. The accompanying set of tabs notes subgroup variations for all the questions.

OVBC surveys currently use aggregated data to analyze the opinions of BIPOC residents in comparison to the opinions of residents who identify as white and not another race. BIPOC residents are not a monolith; the grouping represents a wide diversity of races and ethnicities. The findings included in this memo should not be construed such that all people of color are believed to share the same opinions. Disaggregated race data will be provided when sample sizes permit reliability.

For survey full question wording, all statistically significant subgroup findings, and respondent quotes, readers are encouraged to refer to the accompanying three documents: (1) annotated questionnaire, (2) crosstabulations document, and (3) verbatim written responses spreadsheet.

Oregon Values and Beliefs Center (OVBC): This research was completed as a community service by the Oregon Values and Beliefs Center. OVBC is an independent and non-partisan organization and an Oregon charitable nonprofit corporation. Representative OVBC projects include opinion research about race-based crimes for the Asian Health and Service Center, as well as research about early childhood education and the cost of childcare for the Children’s Institute.

Family Well-being: Key Takeaways

  • Oregonians are most positive about their families’ well-being when it comes to feeling connected with each other and staying healthy from sickness.
  • While still positive overall, Oregonians are slightly less optimistic about their families when it comes to accessing health services, having money for basic needs, feeling connected to their community, and getting enough sleep.
  • Older Oregonians, those with higher educational attainment, white Oregonians, and those without children under 18 in the household tend to be more positive about their families’ well-being.
  • When it comes to having enough money to cover basic needs, Oregonians with higher educational attainment are doing significantly better than those with lower educational attainment.
  • In a reversal of the trends for other markers of well-being, Oregonians with children in the household say their family members are connected to one another at a higher rate than those without children.
  • Rural Oregonians say their families are connected to others in their community and staying healthy from sickness at a higher rate than those from other areas of the state, the only difference between rural, suburban, and urban Oregonians.

Household Family Well-being Among Oregonians

Oregonians are largely positive about the well-being of their household family, particularly when it comes to their connections within the household (Q47) and staying healthy (Q43). While still clearly positive, ratings are more muted when it comes to accessing health services (Q46), having money for basic needs (Q45), feeling connected to the community (Q44), and getting enough sleep (Q42).

Demographic trends are largely consistent across each marker of family well-being (Q42-47), though there are a few exceptions worth noting:

  • Men give slightly higher ratings than women when it comes to their families staying healthy, having enough money, and feeling connected with the community.
  • Older Oregonians are notably more positive than younger Oregonians for almost all markers of family well-being, with the one exception of connections within the family, where ratings are similar across age cohorts.
  • Oregonians with higher educational attainment are more positive than those with lower attainment for each marker of family wellness. The gap is especially large when it comes to having enough money for basic needs.
  • The only differences by area of state are a greater sense of being connected to the community and staying healthy from sickness among rural residents compared to residents from other parts of the state.
  • On almost all markers, white Oregonians are more positive than BIPOC Oregonians about the well-being of their families. There is no difference between white and BIPOC Oregonians when it comes to being connected to other members of their household. Trends by race and ethnicity may be connected to those by age, due to broad demographic trends in the state.
  • Oregonians without children in the household are more positive than those with children by each marker except for feeling connected to members of their household family, where Oregonians with children are more positive than those without.

In Their Own Words: Oregonians Talk About Family Well-being

“I use the VA for my health care. They get worse every year. Proof that putting the government in charge of something/anything is stupid.”

Man, age 45-54, Jackson County, White

“Portlanders have become less friendly since I moved here in 1979. The streets are meaner, people are more suspicious of strangers, and the lack of housing for the poor and houseless is brutal. Housing is a human right, and Oregon, like all other states, has not alleviated the problem. These are the reasons I chose “somewhat” connected to my neighborhood.”

Woman, age 65-74, Multnomah County, White

“Families are complicated.”

Man, age 55-64, Washington County, White

“We became disconnected from our friends and church during COVID. It has been hard to get back into those relationships.”

Woman, age 55-64, Jackson County, White

“Well, [my doctor] did say if I slept well, I would feel better.”

Woman, age 65-74, Klamath County, Native American, American Indian, or Alaska Native and White

“We can say we’re doing somewhat well thanks to the state for SNAP and OHP. Otherwise, we’d be in trouble, and we are very grateful to live in a state that takes care of its people, unlike some other states.”

Woman, age 55-64, Clackamas County, White

“Roseburg itself has many options for urgent care, emergency care, and primary care, but wait times can be extreme (months for a primary care new patient appointment and the only psychiatrist in the county is on zoom from another state).… Those on the outer edges of the county are often the ones in greatest need with the least access to public transportation.”

Woman, age 45-54, Douglas County, White

“Access to mental health providers sucks *everywhere*, not just in Oregon. I literally cannot find a regular therapist for my 18 year-old because everyone is full-up with a six month waiting list. Telehealth therapists are available for crisis management, but not ongoing therapy, which she needs for anxiety and depression.”

Non-binary or gender non-conforming person, age 18-29, Clackamas County, White

“I am not sure how families are making it right now with the high cost of living.”

Woman, age 55-64, Wallowa County, White

Methodology: The online survey consisted of 1,968 Oregon residents ages 18+ and took approximately 15 minutes to complete. Respondents were contacted by using professionally maintained online panels. In gathering responses, a variety of quality control measures were employed, including questionnaire pre-testing, validation, and real-time monitoring of responses. To ensure a representative sample, demographic quotas were set, and data weighted by area of the state, gender, age, and education.

Statement of Limitations: Based on a 95% confidence interval, this survey’s margin of error for the full sample ±2.21%. Due to rounding or multiple answer questions, response percentages may not add up to 100%.

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