Study: Religiosity in Canada and its evolution from 1985 to 2019

Interesting findings from the GSS. Census 2021 will include religious affiliation data which will allow for detailed socio-economic analysis:

A new study finds that Canada’s religious landscape has undergone significant changes in recent decades, including a decline in religious affiliation and a decrease in participation in individual and group religious activities.

The study “Religiosity in Canada and its evolution from 1985 to 2019” uses data from the General Social Survey to profile different patterns of religiosity in Canada and examine how they have changed since 1985.

A clearer understanding of how Canadians’ relationships with religion have evolved provides better insight into the country’s cultural and social history of the country and the diversity of today’s population. New data from the 2021 Census will soon update the portrait of religious diversity in Canada by providing detailed information on religious affiliations and the people with these affiliations.

Around two-thirds of Canadians report having a religious affiliation

In 2019, just over two-thirds (68%) of the Canadian population reported having a religious affiliation, and over half (54%) said their religious or spiritual beliefs were somewhat or very important to the way they live their lives. 

More than one-third of Canadians (37%) reported engaging in religious or spiritual activities on their own at least once a month, and almost one-quarter (23%) reported participating in a group religious activity at least once a month in the previous year. 

Women were more likely than men to report having a religious affiliation (72% compared with 64%) or to consider their religious or spiritual beliefs somewhat or very important to how they live their lives (61% vs. 47%). They were also more likely than men to participate in religious or spiritual activities on their own at least once a week (36% vs. 24%) and in group religious activities at least once a month (26% compared with 21%). The same types of results are found by gender and age. Women are more likely than men to report having a religious affiliation, to participate in group or individual religious or spiritual activities, and to place a high value on their religious or spiritual beliefs, regardless of age.

Dynamics vary across regions

The diversity of regional dynamics has long been a fundamental characteristic of Canada’s religious landscape. For example, high proportions of non-affiliation have distinguished British Columbia for several decades and still characterize the province, with 40% of the population reporting no religious affiliation from 2017 to 2019.

In Quebec, religious affiliation is relatively high. However, more often than elsewhere, it goes hand in hand with low importance given to religious or spiritual beliefs. From 2017 to 2019, 40% of Quebec residents reported both a religious affiliation and low importance of religious or spiritual beliefs, compared with 15% to 25% in other provinces.

Trends in religion in the Atlantic provinces have generally been more stable than in other regions, particularly with respect to religious affiliation. However, the most recent data show particularly sharp contrasts between generations, suggesting that significant changes in the religious landscape have begun in these provinces. For example, from 2017 to 2019, those born between 1940 and 1959 were twice as likely to report both having a religious affiliation and considering their religious or spiritual beliefs somewhat or very important (74%) than those born between 1980 and 1999 (37%).

Participation in religious activities varies widely across religious affiliations 

Among those who reported having a religious affiliation between 2017 and 2019, nearly one-third (32%) had participated in group religious activities at least once a month. However, the frequency of participation in religious activities varied widely across religious affiliations.

For example, a majority of Jehovah’s Witnesses (86%), Latter Day Saints (80%) and Anabaptists (75%) participated in group religious activities monthly. In contrast, Buddhists (15%), Anglicans (19%) and those affiliated with the United Church (19%) had proportions of monthly group participation well below average.

There is also some variation in the importance given to religious beliefs by religious affiliation. Nevertheless, a majority of people of each affiliation reported that their religious or spiritual beliefs were somewhat or very important, ranging from 62% for Catholics to 98% for Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Declines in religious affiliation and participation in religious activities

Both religious affiliation and frequency of participation in group religious activities have trended downward in recent decades. For example, the share of people who reported having a religious affiliation fell from 90% in 1985 to 68% in 2019. Meanwhile, the share of those who attended a group religious activity at least once a month fell by almost half, from 43% to 23% over the same period.

Similar trends were also observed with respect to the practice of individual religious or spiritual activities and the importance given to religious and spiritual beliefs. For example, in 2003, 71% of people reported that their religious or spiritual beliefs were somewhat or very important, compared with 54% in 2019. Finally, the proportion of people who engaged in religious or spiritual activities on their own at least once a week fell from 46% in 2006 to 30% in 2019.

Chart 1  
Evolution of the different religiosity indicators, 1985 to 2019

Chart 1: Evolution of the different religiosity indicators, 1985 to 2019

Religious affiliation and participation are less common among younger generations

In general, recent generations were less likely than the generations that came before them to report a religious affiliation, to participate in group or individual religious activities, or to place a high value on religious and spiritual beliefs in how they live their lives.

For example, at the same age, when they were 20 to 30 years old, those born between 1960 and 1969 were significantly more likely to report a religious affiliation (82%) than those born between 1990 and 1999 (54%). They were also more likely to participate in group religious activities (24%) than their counterparts born between 1990 and 1999 (14%). Similar trends were also observed for participation in individual religious or spiritual activities and the importance of religious beliefs.

The succession of generations displaying these forms of religiosity less and less often accounts for much of the decline in religious affiliation, practices and importance among the Canadian population over the past few decades.

In terms of religiosity, people born outside Canada differ more from those born in Canada among the younger generations

In general, people born outside Canada are more likely than those born in Canada to report a religious affiliation, to consider their religious and spiritual beliefs important to how they live their lives, and to participate in group or individual religious activities. However, this difference is more pronounced among members of younger generations.

For example, among those born between 1980 and 1999, those born outside Canada were much more likely than those born in Canada to report a religious affiliation (71% vs. 59%) or to consider their religious beliefs to be somewhat or very important (62% compared with 39%). In comparison, those born outside Canada between 1940 and 1959 were about as likely as their Canadian-born counterparts to report a religious affiliation (85% vs. 87%) and only slightly more likely to consider their religious beliefs to be somewhat or very important (74% compared with 66%).

Given that immigration is an important factor in Canada’s population growth, these trends could have an impact on the evolution of the various religiosity indicators examined in this study.

In addition, information from the 2021 Census will soon provide an updated picture of religious diversity in Canada. This information will provide a more detailed picture of religious affiliations and the people with these affiliations.

Source: https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/211028/dq211028b-eng.htm?CMP=mstatcan

GSS – Social Identity, 2020: A snapshot of pride in Canadian achievements among designated groups

Some of the more interesting and revealing findings for me:

  • Recent immigrants have more favourable views than longer term immigrants;
  • Children of visible minorities have less favourable views than than their parents;
  • Visible minorities have more pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society than non visible minorities, with differences between groups;
  • Visible minorities have more pride in how democracy works in Canada;
  • Indigenous peoples have the least pride in how Canada treats all groups and how democracy works; and,
  • Young people have less pride in how Canada treats all groups and how democracy works.

In one sense, this represents integration, as the initial reactions change with the lived experience and immigrants over time, along with their children, move closer to the non-immigrant, no-visible minority population:

“Today’s Daily article presents a snapshot of results from the General Social Survey – Social Identity (GSS SI). This first release focuses on the pride that Canadians feel for selected Canadian achievements and how it is similar or different across diverse population groups. The survey asked respondents about their pride in 13 different Canadian achievements. For this analysis, three Canadian achievements were chosen because of their relevance to the COVID-19 pandemic. These are pride in Canada’s health care system, pride in the way democracy works in Canada and pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society.

As part of the data pillar of Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy, Canadian Heritage sponsored an oversample of six population groups designated as visible minorities for the latest cycle of the GSS SI. This oversample will allow data users to further disaggregate data to better represent the unique experiences of different groups of Canadians.

Canadians are most proud of Canada’s health care system

At a time when Canada’s front-line workers were treating COVID-19 patients in clinics, emergency rooms and hospitals, Canadians were most proud of their health care system. The highest share (74%) of respondents who said that they were very proud or proud of an achievement reported feeling proud of Canada’s health care system. People who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities were especially proud, with 82% reporting feeling proud of Canada’s health care system, compared with 71% of non–visible minorities. Among the different visible minority groups, Filipino (96%) and South Asian (87%) respondents were the most likely to report being very proud or proud of Canada’s health care system.

Almost half of Canadians report feeling proud of Canada’s treatment of all groups in society

COVID-19 shone a light on the systemic inequities that many people in Canadian society experience—the health, social and economic impacts of the pandemic were not experienced equally by all Canadians. In addition, movements such as Black Lives Matter brought greater attention to the systemic inequities and racism faced by Black Canadians and other population groups designated as visible minorities. Against this backdrop, 49% of the population expressed pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society. However, there were differences among Canadians who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities; 64% of respondents who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities felt pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society, compared with 44% of individuals not in a visible minority group. Canadian-born respondents who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities were less likely than respondents in groups designated as visible minorities who immigrated to Canada to report pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society (45% compared with 68%).

It is important to note that there are differences between population groups designated as visible minorities. A lower proportion of Black (52%) and Chinese (57%) respondents expressed pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society. This contrasts with West Asian (77%), Filipino (73%), Arab (72%) and South Asian (70%) respondents, who were more likely to report pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society. This could be partly attributable to experiences with discrimination, which were particularly high for some population groups designated as visible minorities during the pandemic. For example, crowdsourcing data collected in August 2020 by Statistics Canada indicated that Korean (64%), Chinese (60%) and Black (55%) participants were more likely to report experiencing discrimination or being treated unfairly during the pandemic (see the publication “Experiences of discrimination during the COVID-19 pandemic“).

Chart 1  
Pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society among population groups designated as visible minorities, Canada, 2020

Chart 1: Pride in Canada's treatment of all groups in society among population groups designated as visible minorities, Canada, 2020

Men were more likely than women to report feeling pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society—52% of men compared with 46% of women. Pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society is the achievement with the biggest gender difference, with only minor differences between men and women for the other Canadian achievements included in the survey.

Canadians are generally proud of the way democracy works in Canada, and this is especially the case for many people who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities

Almost 7 in 10 Canadians (68%) said that they felt pride in the way democracy works in Canada. This increased to close to 8 in 10 (79%) for respondents who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities, compared with 64% of those who did not belong to a visible minority group. Some visible minority groups had a high proportion of respondents reporting pride in the way democracy works in Canada, with 80% or more of West Asian, Filipino, Latin American and South Asian respondents reporting pride in this Canadian achievement.

Canadian-born respondents who belong to population groups designated as visible minorities were less likely to report pride in the way democracy works in Canada, with 65% reporting pride in this achievement, compared with 82% of respondents in groups designated as visible minorities who immigrated to Canada. Similar to Canadian-born respondents belonging to groups designated as visible minorities, 62% of Canadian-born respondents not belonging to a visible minority group were proud of the way democracy works in Canada.

Immigrants who arrived to Canada within the past five years are more likely to feel pride in how Canada treats all groups in society

Immigrant respondents (63%) were more likely than Canadian-born respondents (43%) to be proud of Canada’s treatment of all groups in society. For immigrants, pride in how Canada treats all groups in society is connected to the time since their arrival in Canada; the longer they have been in Canada, the lower their pride in how Canada treats all groups in society. Nearly 8 in 10 immigrants who arrived in Canada 5 years ago or less (78%) expressed pride in this achievement, compared with 65% of immigrants who arrived 6 to 10 years ago and 60% of immigrants who arrived more than 10 years ago. However, regardless of the time since their arrival to Canada, the immigrant population was more likely than the non-immigrant population to report pride. 

The different levels of pride between immigrant respondents and Canadian-born respondents were observed not only for how Canada treats all groups in society but also for the health care system (79% versus 72%) and the way democracy works in Canada (81% versus 62%).

Indigenous respondents also report feeling the most pride in Canada’s health care system but are less likely to report pride in how Canada treats all groups in society and the way democracy works in Canada

As with non-Indigenous respondents, Indigenous people also reported feeling the most pride in Canada’s health care system. Among the Indigenous population living off reserve, 67% were proud of Canada’s health care system. This was the case for 63% of First Nations people living off reserve and 69% of Métis. This compares with 72% of non–visible minority, non-Indigenous respondents. Because of the small number of Inuit respondents, estimates for Inuit are not available. It is important to note that the GSS SI did not collect information for people living on reserve. Thus, the information for Indigenous people reflects only the answers of respondents who live off reserve, which may be different from those of people who live on reserve.

Close to one-third (31%) of Indigenous people living off reserve reported feeling pride in how Canada treats all groups in society, compared with 43% of non–visible minority, non-Indigenous Canadians. Indigenous people were also less likely to report feeling pride in how democracy works in Canada. Overall, just over half (52%) of Indigenous people living off reserve felt proud of the way democracy works (46% of First Nations people and 56% of Métis), compared with 63% of non–visible minority, non-Indigenous Canadians.

These results partly reflect the historical and ongoing impacts of colonization, as well as the long-standing historical inequities experienced by Indigenous people in Canada, including social, democratic and economic inequities. As well, other achievements not listed in the survey may be more relevant to Indigenous respondents.

A slightly lower percentage of persons with disabilities report pride in Canada’s health care system 

Persons with disabilities were most proud of Canada’s health care system (72%), lower than what was reported by persons without disabilities (76%). This could be attributable to barriers that persons with disabilities experience trying to access health care services. For example, slightly over three-quarters (77%) of crowdsourcing participants with long-term conditions or disabilities reported that they required a health care service but were unable to access it because of the COVID-19 pandemic (see the publication The changes in health and well-being of Canadians with long-term conditions or disabilities since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic). Results are based on participants in the 2020 crowdsourcing initiative Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians – Living with Long-term Conditions and Disabilities (Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians: Data Collection Series).

Persons with disabilities were also less likely than persons without disabilities to report pride in the way democracy works in Canada (64% compared with 71%). Regarding pride in the treatment of all groups in society, persons with disabilities were less likely than persons without disabilities to express pride in this achievement (43% compared with 53%). Many persons with disabilities have experienced barriers in society, including in the workplace, or have experienced discrimination. For example, almost half (48%) of participants with disabilities in the 2020 crowdsourcing initiative Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadians – Living with Long-term Conditions and Disabilities reported that they were discriminated against during the COVID-19 pandemic, compared with 25% of those without disabilities (see the publication The changes in health and well-being of Canadians with long-term conditions or disabilities since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic).

Younger Canadians are less likely to be proud of Canada’s treatment of all groups in society and the way democracy works

While similar proportions of Canadians of all ages were proud of the health care system, Canadians aged 15 to 34 were less likely than those aged 35 and older to report pride in the way democracy works in Canada and pride in Canada’s treatment of all groups in society. While 62% of Canadians aged 15 to 34 reported pride in the way democracy works, 70% of those aged 35 and older reported feeling proud. Canadians aged 15 to 34 were also less likely than older Canadians to be proud of the way all groups in society are treated, with 43% of 15- to 34-year-olds saying they were proud of this, compared with 53% of people aged 35 to 54 and 50% of people aged 55 and older. “

Source: https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/210928/dq210928c-eng.htm?CMP=mstatcan

Alleged hate crimes rarely investigated by police, report claims

Of note:

Nearly a quarter million Canadians say they were victims of hate-motivated incidents during a single year, but police across the country investigated fewer than one per cent of these events as hate crimes, according to new data from Statistics Canada.

The federal agency’s latest General Social Survey results on victimization show approximately 223,000 incidents were reported in 2019 in which victims felt hatred was a motivating factor for the suspect. Of those illegal or nearly-criminal events, 130,000 were deemed violent by the person reporting them.

About 21 per cent of the total victims – 48,000 – said they called local police, but official statistics from that same year show Canadian officers only reported 1,946 criminal incidents motivated by hate nationwide.

Statscan collects this information on victims of hate crimes every five years within a 12-month period. Experts say, even though it is immediately dated upon its release, the statistics offer the best snapshot of the state of hate in Canada.

Academics and non-profits that support victims say the scale of incidents captured by the pre-pandemic survey, released last week, are a wake-up call to the massive harms being done to the country’s marginalized communities.

“We are in denial, it’s not just complacency – for a lot, it is outright denial that there’s a problem,” said Barbara Perry, director of Ontario Tech University’s Centre on Hate, Bias and Extremism who began studying hate crimes in the country almost two decades ago.

This summer, Statistics Canada released crime data from last year that showed police across the country reported a record 2,669 hate crimes cases last year – a 37 per cent spike from the year prior – even as overall crime trended downward while society slowed down during the pandemic.

The relatively small number of cases flagged by police in 2019 as being motivated by hate also indicates the criminal justice system is doing a poor job of combatting hate crimes or other incidents where people are targeted over their ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or gender, Dr. Perry said.

“That’s really disturbing, what’s happening is that the hate motivation is being funnelled out very early, police are not reporting or recording it as a hate crime or people have reported and it hasn’t been followed up,” Dr. Perry said.

Last year, Dr. Perry’s own study of hate crimes investigators she interviewed in Ontario showed they were often frustrated by a lack of institutional support to investigate these cases properly and many were unclear on what constitutes a hate crime, with their confusion exacerbated by the difficulty of determining the hate motivation in criminal acts.

The Criminal Code only identifies four actual hate crimes: three hate propaganda offences and mischief relating to religious or cultural sites. The rest of so-called hate crimes are incidents where a suspect is charged for a core crime and then prosecutors may argue hate motivation at the end of a trial to secure a heavier sentence.

The federal Liberal government recently told The Globe and Mail that it has no plans to update the code, as recommended by National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) and policing experts, to add new provisions that would single out hate-motivated assault, murder, threats, and mischief to include specific new penalties for each infraction.

Statistics Canada said it could not comment on the survey because the bureaucracy is in caretaker mode during the federal election campaign. A spokesperson for the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, which includes the leaders of most police forces in the country, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday.

Mustafa Farooq, CEO of NCCM, said his group has its own reporting line that he says logs at least one call a day about a violent threat or incident, said a major challenge is everyday people also have trouble separating a hate-motivated incident from a criminal act that meets the threshold of police securing a charge. That is why Canada needs to create a new system to better support these victims, whether a criminal offence is involved or not, he said.

But, Mr. Farooq said, even when people do report to their local police, the indifference they are often met with stops them from pursuing justice.

“When people come and tell their stories it is an often uphill battle to have police take those claims taken seriously,” he said, noting his organization frequently liaises with victims and officers.

Evan Balgord, the executive director of the Canadian Anti-Hate Network, a non-partisan non-profit, said the last General Social Survey on victimization in 2014 showed that people were slightly more likely to report these incidents to police, with 31 per cent of all hate-motivated incidents compared to 21 per cent in the new survey.

The new data shows victims attributed more than half the incidents (119,000) in part to a suspect being motivated by a hatred of their race or ethnicity, followed next by the language they were using (72,000) and then their sex (54,000). Multiple factors could be attributed by to a single incident, the agency said. The number of incidents were estimates rounded to the nearest thousand and based on a survey of 22,000 Canadians across the country, with roughly two-thirds choosing the option of responding online, the agency said.

More than half the incidents were reported in Ontario (74,000) and Quebec (62,000), followed by Alberta (31,000) and then British Columbia (29,000).

Irfan Chaudhry, director of MacEwan University’s office of Human Rights, Diversity and Equity in Edmonton, said one reason people don’t report a hate-motivated incident to police is that certain communities feel shame, don’t want to feel re-victimized when talking to the authorities and would rather deal with the aftermath, such as cleaning up offensive graffiti, on their own. More commonly, victims simply don’t feel officers can do anything, said Prof. Chaudhry, who founded and oversees Alberta’s Stop Hate independent reporting line for such incidents.

Mr. Balgord, whose group monitors, exposes and counters hate-promoting movements, groups and people, said Statistics Canada needs to do a much better job of tracking these hate incidents by doing this survey every year.

“The General Social Survey takes forever, it’s like a dinosaur – we’re halfway through 2021 and we’re just getting the 2019 results,” he said. “The hate ecosystem moves and shifts so quickly and we don’t even have pandemic-related hate crime data yet.”

Source: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/british-columbia/article-alleged-hate-crimes-rarely-investigated-by-police-report-claims/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=Morning%20Update&utm_content=2021-8-30_7&utm_term=Morning%20Update:%20Ukrainian%20troops%20rescue%20Canada-bound%20Afghans%20in%20daring%20operation&utm_campaign=newsletter&cu_id=%2BTx9qGuxCF9REU6kNldjGJtpVUGIVB3Y

Canada is in the midst of a ‘hate crime crisis.’ Why aren’t federal leaders talking about it?

To be fair, the NDP platform does while the Conservative platform does not (still waiting for the official Liberal and Green platforms, will go through the PPC platform in the next few days):

New data shows that in 2019 Canadians self-reported an estimated 223,000 incidents they felt were motivated by hate — an extreme contrast to the number of incidents reported to police that same year.

According to data pulled from Statistics Canada’s 2019 General Social Survey, around 130,000 of the self-reported incidents were deemed violent by the person reporting the event, while reports of non-violent acts, including vandalism and theft of household and personal property, accounted for around 94,000 incidents.

The self-reported numbers dwarf the 1,951 incidents that police investigated as hate crimes in 2019, with the discrepancy between the numbers raising questions about how much is being reported to officials and the magnitude of hate in Canada.

The Canadian Anti-Hate Network, the organization that first requested the data from Statistics Canada and shared it with the Star, attributes the gap partly to communities which may be fearful of police, as well as a failure to properly label incidents as ones motivated by hate.

The organization has called on all federal parties to put in place an action plan to address what it calls the “hate crime crisis.”

And on the campaign trail itself, political leaders criss-crossing the country and candidates canvassing the streets aren’t immune.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, who encountered racist remarks during the 2019 campaign and faced them again in recent days, said Wednesday that the “climate of hate” in Canada makes people feel like they don’t belong.

“I don’t focus on myself when it comes to those moments. But I do think about the rise of hate that a lot of people have to face. I think about kids growing up with a rise in anti-Asian hate,” said Singh, sharing the story of a Chinese constituent who warned her mother to stop going on evening walks.

“I’m worried about people from the Muslim community, who are worried because of the attacks on Muslims,” he said. “I’m worried about anti-Semitism. We’ve seen attacks on synagogues, attacking and targeting Jewish people.”

On Thursday, Liberal candidate François-Philippe Champagne tweeted several images of his campaign vehicle and election signs after they were vandalized that morning. Two swastikas were spray-painted on one sign, which features images of Champagne and Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.

Fellow Liberal candidate Anthony Housefather also shared a photo of his defaced election signs earlier this week.

“Each day of the last week, Nazi symbols have been drawn on my posters. This antisemitism will not stop me but it can easily deter good people from entering politics,” Housefather tweeted, denouncing similar acts of vandalism that have appeared on other candidates’ campaign materials.

Mustafa Farooq, CEO of the National Council of Muslim Canadians (NCCM), called the incidents “atrocious” and “disturbing”.

But he also questioned why political leaders have yet to materially address Canada’s “influx of hate” during their election events.

“It’s incredibly odd to me that this has not become a major question on the campaign trail,” he said.

In the wake of the London, Ont. attack that left four members of a Muslim family dead, the national council released more than 60 policy recommendations aimed at tackling hate, including the creation of a hate crime accountability unit in each province that would improve the way incidents are processed, investigated and monitored.

Source: Canada is in the midst of a ‘hate crime crisis.’ Why aren’t federal leaders talking about it?

StatsCan — Experiences of violent victimization and discrimination reported by minority populations in Canada, 2014

The latest from the General Social Survey which I look forward to reading in detail:

Immigrants and visible minorities less likely to report experiencing violent victimization

According to the most recent data from the General Social Survey on Canadians’ Safety (Victimization), immigrants—regardless of citizenship or how long they have resided in Canada—were less likely than the Canadian-born population to report being victims of violent crime. In 2014, immigrants reported experiencing violent victimization—sexual assault, robbery or physical assault—at a rate of 39 incidents per 1,000 population, compared with a rate of 86 incidents per 1,000 people among the Canadian-born population. Similarly, individuals who self-identified as belonging to a visible minority group were less likely than their non-visible minority counterparts to report experiencing violence (55 versus 81 per 1,000 population). In terms of religious affiliation, individuals who reported a religion other than Christianity experienced violent victimization at a rate similar to people affiliated with Christianity (72 versus 67 per 1,000 population), the most commonly reported religious affiliation.

Today, three Juristat articles focusing on the self-reported experiences of violent victimization and discrimination among three populations of interest—immigrants, visible minorities and persons with a religious affiliation—are available. While each article discusses a specific population, they are not mutually exclusive. For example, according to Census of Population data, 65% of immigrants in Canada are visible minorities, 63% of visible minorities are immigrants, and 78% of people affiliated with a religion other than Christianity are visible minorities.

In general, the characteristics of violent incidents did not differ significantly according to immigrant status, visible minority status or religious affiliation. For example, the majority of incidents involved a single offender and, in most cases, the offender was male. Among the immigrant population specifically, recent immigrants (those who immigrated to Canada within the previous 10 years) and established immigrants (those who immigrated 10 or more years prior) reported similar rates of violent victimization. However, recent immigrant victims of violence were significantly more likely to report that the offender was a stranger (83%, compared with 31% of established immigrant victims).

Some populations more likely to report experiencing discrimination

While members of the immigrant and visible minority populations reported relatively low rates of violent victimization compared with their Canadian-born and non-visible minority counterparts, they were significantly more likely to report experiencing some form of discrimination on the basis of, for example, their ethnicity or culture, or race or skin colour.

In 2014, approximately one in six (17%) immigrants reported that they had experienced discrimination in the five years preceding the survey, compared with 12% of the Canadian-born population. More specifically, recent immigrants were more likely to have reported experiencing discrimination than established immigrants (20% versus 16%). More than four in ten (42%) of those recent immigrants who experienced discrimination indicated that it was due to their language, compared with just over one-quarter (27%) of established immigrants.

In terms of visible minority status, one in five (20%) of those who self-identified as a member of a visible minority group reported experiencing some form of discrimination in the preceding five years. This compared with 12% of the non-visible minority population. Among the visible minority population who reported experiencing discrimination, more than three in five (63%) believed that they were discriminated against because of their race or skin colour. Individuals who identified as Arab (29%), Black (27%) or Latin American (26%) were the most likely to report experiencing discrimination.

When it came to religious affiliation, individuals who reported an affiliation with a religion other than Christianity were more likely to report experiencing discrimination on the basis of their religion. More than 1 in 10 (11%) people who were affiliated with a religion other than Christianity reported experiencing discrimination on the basis of their religion, compared with 1% of people affiliated with a Christian religion.

Immigrants and visible minorities report experiencing discrimination at Canadian border

Regardless of immigrant status or visible minority status, Canadians most often reported experiencing discrimination at work, when applying for a job or promotion, or when they were in a store, bank or restaurant. There were no significant differences between immigrants and the Canadian-born population when it came to experiencing discrimination when dealing with the police. However, immigrants were significantly more likely than the Canadian-born population to indicate that they experienced some form of discrimination when crossing the border into Canada (12% versus 4%).

Visible minorities were nearly twice as likely as non-visible minorities to report experiencing discrimination when dealing with the police (13% versus 7%) and three times more likely when crossing the border into Canada (12% versus 4%).

Decline in reported experiences of discrimination among minority populations

Although immigrants and visible minorities were more likely than their Canadian-born and non-visible minority counterparts to report experiencing discrimination, the overall prevalence of perceived discrimination among these populations has declined in recent years. Specifically, among immigrants, the proportion of people who reported experiencing discrimination declined slightly from 19% in 2004 to 17% in 2014. A larger decline was observed within the visible minority population, down from 28% in 2004 to 20% in 2014.

Some groups feel less safe from crime

Most individuals were generally satisfied with their personal safety from crime—regardless of immigrant status, visible minority status or religious affiliation. There were, however, some notable differences in the degree to which people felt safe. For example, immigrants, visible minorities and individuals who were affiliated with a religion other than Christianity felt less safe from crime when home alone at night and when walking alone in their neighbourhood after dark.

via The Daily — Experiences of violent victimization and discrimination reported by minority populations in Canada, 2014

Les minorités visibles se sentent moins en sécurité que les autres

GSS Selected Indicators Police Perception

Not surprising in the current climate but somewhat more so given that the GSS data dates from 2014:

Les minorités visibles – surtout les Arabes et les Asiatiques occidentaux – se sentent moins en sécurité que les autres au pays, révèle mardi une analyse de Statistique Canada.

Selon cette étude portant sur les perceptions des Canadiens à l’égard de leur sécurité personnelle, réalisée sur la base des données de 2014, les personnes ayant affirmé appartenir à une minorité visible étaient moins susceptibles que les autres de déclarer se sentir tout à fait en sécurité lorsqu’elles marchent seules dans leur voisinage quand il fait noir.

Elles n’étaient que 44% à se sentir en sécurité, par rapport à 54% pour les Canadiens qui ne sont pas des minorités visibles.

Cette notion de «perception de sécurité» est évidemment différente du taux réel de criminalité observé.

Statistique Canada a bien noté que les habitants des grandes villes se sentent généralement moins en sécurité que ceux des petites localités, et que la majorité des personnes se décrivant comme minorités visibles résident dans les grands centres. Même en tenant compte de ce facteur, les minorités visibles étaient moins susceptibles de déclarer se sentir en sécurité que les autres.

Parmi les différents groupes de minorités visibles, les Arabes (15%) et les Asiatiques occidentaux – par exemple les Iraniens et les Afghans – (16%) étaient les plus susceptibles d’indiquer ne pas se sentir en sécurité lorsqu’ils marchent seuls le soir.

Chez les femmes arabes ou asiatiques occidentales, cette proportion était encore plus élevée, à 25%.

Il s’agit d’un changement par rapport à 10 ans plus tôt, alors que les Arabes et les Asiatiques occidentaux affichaient des sentiments de sécurité semblables à ceux des autres groupes de minorités visibles, note l’organisme fédéral de statistiques.

De même, parmi les principaux groupes religieux, les musulmans (14%), en particulier les femmes musulmanes (21%), étaient aussi les plus susceptibles de dire qu’ils ne se sentaient pas très ou pas du tout en sécurité.

«Certaines études suggèrent que les crimes haineux peuvent avoir une incidence sur le sentiment de sécurité de l’ensemble de la communauté ciblée et non seulement sur la victime directe», note l’organisme fédéral de statistiques. Et puisque les plus récentes données policières font état d’une augmentation du nombre de crimes haineux ciblant les Arabes et la population musulmane, cela pourrait expliquer en partie le fait que les Arabes et les Asiatiques occidentaux soient maintenant plus susceptibles que les autres membres des minorités visibles de déclarer ne pas se sentir en sécurité lorsqu’ils marchent seuls quand il fait noir», est-il écrit, études à l’appui.

via Les minorités visibles se sentent moins en sécurité que les autres | Stéphanie Marin | National

Statistics Canada: Patterns and Determinants of Immigrants’ Sense of Belonging to Canada and Their Source Country

statscan-gss-belongingImportant study by Statistics Canada and John Berry from the General Social Survey confirming high levels of belonging to Canada:

The results show that 93% of immigrants had a very strong or a strong sense of belonging to Canada. Furthermore, a strong sense of belonging to the receiving country is not necessarily incompatible with a sense of belonging to the source country. About 69% of all immigrants had strong sense of belonging to both Canada and their source country (the integrated belonging profile). Another 24% of immigrants had a strong sense of belonging to Canada and a weak sense of belonging to their source country (the national belonging profile). In comparison, very few (3%) had a strong sense of belonging to their source country but a weak sense of belonging to Canada (the source-country belonging profile); and very few (4%) had a weak sense of belonging to both Canada and their source country (the weak belonging profile).

Compared with immigrants in the integrated belonging profile, those in the national belonging profile were characterized by lower levels of civil liberty and life satisfaction in their source countries and by more exposure to Canadian society. Younger age at immigration, more years of residence in Canada, and speaking English or French at home are all significant predictors of the national belonging profile.

The source-country belonging profile was characterized by a high average level of life satisfaction in the source country, older age at immigration, shorter stay in Canada, and perceived discrimination. The weak belonging profile was relatively more prevalent among spouses and dependants of economic principal applicants, or immigrants who came to join their relatives in Canada, and among those who were unemployed, never married, or had very low income.

Overall, this study finds that the overwhelming majority of immigrants had a strong sense of belonging to Canada, with or without a strong sense of belonging to their source country. Source-country attributes were as important as immigration entry status and post-migration experience in affecting immigrants’ sense of belonging to Canada and their source country.

Source: Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series: Patterns and Determinants of Immigrants’ Sense of Belonging to Canada and Their Source Country

Immigrants more likely to consider Canadian symbols important to national identity

SC - GSS Immigrant Native Comparisons.001

SC - GSS Immigrant Native Comparisons.002Interesting findings from the General Social Survey. For the charts, I have focussed on the contrast between immigrants (first generation) and the native-born and visible minorities (multiple generations but the vast majority first generation) and non-visible minorities.

The key takeaway, and no significant change from earlier surveys, is that for the most part, visible minorities and immigrants have higher level of attachment to Canada than the native-born (in early briefings to Minister Kenney, this type of evidence was cited to indicate that there was no need for major changes to the citizenship program:

The vast majority of Canadians think symbols like the flag and the national anthem are important to Canada’s identity, an expansive survey of opinions by Canada’s national data agency suggests.

More than nine in 10 Canadians surveyed by Statistics Canada said symbols like the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the flag were important symbols of national identity. Other iconic notions such as the national anthem, the Mounties and hockey were also cited by more than three-quarters of Canadians polled in the agency’s General Social Survey, which asked 27,695 Canadians from all provinces and territories for their views on Canada’s national identity in 2013.

The vast majority of respondents said they believed that Canadians shared specific values. Exactly what those values are, however, is a subject of some debate.

Human rights a major factor

The thing most often cited by those who think Canadians share specific values was the value of human rights, at 92 per cent of respondents. Respect for aboriginal culture (68 per cent) and linguistic duality (73 per cent) also came up a lot.

By and large, immigrants and minority groups were more likely to believe national symbols are very important to Canada’s national identity.

This picture sent out last year by a B.C. RCMP detachment was deemed to be one of the most iconically Canadian images in recent memory. (Royal Canadian Mounted Police)

That gap was especially pronounced when it comes to valuing the importance of the national anthem. When asked about the importance of O Canada, 75 per cent of immigrants viewed it as very important, compared to 61 per cent of non-immigrants.

And all national symbols were viewed as more important by visible minorities than by Canadians at large. The gap was largest in terms of the significance of the charter (82 per cent versus 68 per cent), while the smallest differences were evident for the RCMP (59 per cent versus 54 per cent) and hockey (52 per cent and 45 per cent).

The great frozen game

On the subject of hockey, there’s a gap in how important our national sport is perceived to be between men and women. Half of all men said hockey was important to Canada’s national identity. Only 42 per cent of women said the same.

There was also a gender gap with regards to the belief of whether Canadians even share specific values — never mind what those values may be.

Some 41 per cent of women believed to a great extent that Canadians valued equality between men and women, compared to 53 per cent of men. That gap existed across all age groups, although it was most pronounced among people under 25, where 46 per cent of women said so, but 63 per cent of men did.

Among those over the age of 75, 31 per cent of women said so, compared with 46 per cent of men.

National pride

By and large, Canadians are on the whole proud of Canada’s national identity. That statement is especially true of immigrants, as they “reported a greater feeling of pride in being Canadian and in Canadian achievements,” the data agency said.

There were some geographic differences, however, with people from Quebec feeling generally less proud of Canada’s national identity. Within Quebec, residents of Saguenay had the lowest level of pride in the province, with 52 per cent saying they were either proud or very proud to be Canadian, while residents of Gatineau had the highest levels of pride in Quebec at 76 per cent.

Source: Immigrants more likely to consider Canadian symbols important to national identity – Business – CBC News