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Canada — Police-reported crime statistics, 2013

July 29, 2014 Comments off

Police-reported crime statistics, 2013
Source: Statistics Canada

The police-reported Crime Severity Index (CSI), which measures the volume and severity of crime, declined 9% in 2013 compared with 2012. This was the 10th consecutive decline in the index. The CSI was 36% lower than 10 years earlier.

The traditional crime rate also declined in 2013 compared with 2012, falling 8%. It continued its long-term downward trend that began in the early 1990s, reaching its lowest level since 1969. Since 1962, the traditional crime rate has measured the volume of crime, but does not take into account the severity of crimes.

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Canada — Police-reported hate crimes, 2012

July 2, 2014 Comments off

Police-reported hate crimes, 2012
Source: Statistics Canada

In 2012, police reported 1,414 criminal incidents motivated by hate in Canada, 82 more incidents than in 2011. These hate crimes represented 4.1 incidents per 100,000 population.

In 2012, about half of all hate crimes (704 incidents, or 51%) were motivated by hatred toward a race or ethnicity such as Black, Asian, Arab or Aboriginal populations. Another 419 incidents, or 30%, were motivated by hatred towards a particular religion, including hate crimes targeting Jewish, Muslim, Catholic and other religions.

An additional 13% (185 incidents) were motivated by sexual orientation, while the remaining 6% of hate crimes were motivated by language, mental or physical disability, sex, age or some other characteristic (such as occupation or political beliefs).

Police-reported sexual offences against children and youth in Canada, 2012

June 4, 2014 Comments off

Police-reported sexual offences against children and youth in Canada, 2012
Source: Statistics Canada

There were about 14,000 children and youth (under the age of 18) who were victims of a police-reported sexual offence in Canada in 2012. This represented a rate of 205 for every 100,000 children and youth. Overall, the rate of police-reported sexual offences against children and youth decreased for the second consecutive year in 2012, and was similar to the rate reported by police in 2009.

Nevertheless, children and youth continued to account for more than half (55%) of the victims of sexual offences reported by police, even though they make up 20% of the Canadian population. Police classified about three in four (72%) of these victims as victims of level 1 sexual assault.

Female children and youth were victims of police-reported sexual offences at a higher rate than male children and youth. There were 341 female child or youth victims of police-reported sexual offences for every 100,000 female children and youth in Canada, about five times higher than the rate for males (75 per 100,000 male children and youth).

Firearms and violent crime in Canada, 2012

May 13, 2014 Comments off

Firearms and violent crime in Canada, 2012
Source: Statistics Canada

While firearm-related violent crime accounts for a relatively small proportion of all violent crime in Canada, it can have considerable physical, emotional, and psychological effects on those who are victimized, on families, and on communities (Hahn et al. 2005). As a result, firearm-related violent crime is a significant social concern. In addition, about one in five (21%) firearm-related deaths in Canada is the result of a criminal offence, while the majority (79%) are the result of suicide, accident, or legal intervention (Statistics Canada 2012).

The analysis of firearm-related violent crime in this Juristat relies on two separate data sources. The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Survey provides data on firearms and police-reported violent crime while data on firearm-related homicides comes from the Homicide Survey. Quebec is excluded from the analysis of UCR data due to data quality issues; specifically, a large proportion of incidents where the most serious weapon present was reported as unknown. The analysis of firearm related homicides, however, includes all provinces and territories in Canada. As there are differences in coverage between the two data sources, they are used as separate yet complementary sources of data in order to analyze firearm-related violent crime in Canada.

Information on the types of firearm most frequently present and most frequently used in the commission of an offence, the relationship between the accused and victim, the level of injury, and the involvement of youth is presented. These findings are compared to violent crime committed without a firearm to further understand the nature of firearm-related violent crime in Canada. In addition to data from the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Survey and the Homicide Survey, the Integrated Criminal Court Survey is used in this Juristat to examine court case processing of violent offences involving a firearm.

Canada — Family law cases in the civil courts, 2012/2013

May 9, 2014 Comments off

Family law cases in the civil courts, 2012/2013
Source: Statistics Canada

The civil court system in Canada deals with family law cases as well as a wide variety of other civil issues such as lawsuits and contract disputes. Every year, families make use of the civil court system to resolve issues related to family breakdown, including, divorce, separation, child custody, access and support, and other family issues. Concerned with the burden and costs of family law court cases (on both families and courts), federal, provincial and territorial governments have put in place an increasing number of family justice services to help couples come to agreement without having to go to court, or if need be, to help them through the court process. These include parent information programs and centres, mediation and alternate dispute resolution. In addition, the federal government publishes Child Support tables based on federal and provincial guidelines to help families calculate standard child support amounts. In spite of the increased availability of these services, there is still concern that family law court cases are complex and lengthy and comprise a substantial amount of civil court activity.

Using information from the Statistics Canada Civil Court Survey (CCS), this Juristat article looks in more detail at the activity of different types of family law cases within the civil court system.Note 2 The first part of the report looks at the characteristics of family law cases active in 2012/2013. The second part of the report then examines the court activity (documents filed, hearings and judgments) of different types of family law cases over time, examining the activity of cases initiated in 2008/2009.

It is important to note that court activity will vary for different types of cases. The fact that a case involves many court events or continues to be active may be a function of the type of case (e.g. adoption compared to a complex divorce or separation), the individual family circumstances, or the number of issues that a case needs to address, and not a function of the court process itself.

Police resources in Canada, 2013

April 10, 2014 Comments off

Police resources in Canada, 2013
Source: Statistics Canada

In a period of fiscal pressures coupled with growing policing responsibilities, discussions regarding the economics of policing are taking place. Contributing to these discussions are police services, the public sector, academics, the private sector, as well as the general public. The discussions seek to identify the nature of and reasons for police expenditures, as well as ways to reduce costs while continuing to meet police responsibilities regarding public safety (Public Safety Canada 2013).

Using data from the Police Administration Survey (see the “Survey descriptions” section for details), this Juristat article will focus on the most recent findings regarding the rate of police strength and police expenditures. The Police Administration Survey captures police-reported data on the number of police officers in Canada by rank and sex, as well as civilian employees, based on a snapshot date (which is May 15, 2013 for the most recent data). Data on hiring, departures, and eligibility to retire in this report are based on either the 2012 calendar year or the 2012/2013 fiscal year, depending on the police service.

Information from this survey is provided for Canada, the provinces and territories and census metropolitan areas (CMAs). In addition, this article provides information on workplace mobility within police services, including the hiring of and departures by police, and eligibility to retire. Finally, it summarizes data on the characteristics of police officers, including gender, age group, and Aboriginal and visible minority status. To provide a more complete picture of the state of policing in Canada, the following contextual information are included: policing responsibilities and strategies within the economics of policing discussions; international data on police personnel and gender from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC); and wage information from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey (LFS).

Legal aid in Canada, 2012/2013

March 20, 2014 Comments off

Legal aid in Canada, 2012/2013
Source: Statistics Canada

Access to justice in Canada is a priority of governments and policy-makers, legal professionals and the public. One aspect is access to legal services. Not all Canadians have the resources to pay for a lawyer. Legal aid plans have been established in all provinces and territories with the common goal of assisting lower-income Canadians who require legal services either for criminal or civil matters. This Juristat bulletin presents results from the Legal Aid Survey which collects information on the operation of Canada’s 13 legal aid plans.

In order to operate and provide legal services, legal aid plans receive funding from governments (both federal and provincial/territorial) as well as from client contributions, cost recoveries from legal settlements, and contributions from the legal profession and other sources.1

The federal government provides criminal legal aid funding to the provinces and criminal and civil legal aid funding to the territories.2 In 2012/2013, the federal government reported providing a total of $112 million to all provincial/territorial legal aid plans in Canada.

Provincial and territorial governments directly fund both criminal and civil legal aid. In 2012/2013, provincial and territorial governments reported contributing $658 million to legal aid plans across Canada.

Legal aid plans in Canada reported receiving funding of almost $835 million in 2012/2013 (Table 1). Government sources contributed the vast majority of this amount at 93% of the total.

The remaining 7% of funding was received from client contributions and cost recoveries from legal settlements, contributions of the legal profession and other sources.

Co-offending in Canada, 2011

November 25, 2013 Comments off

Co-offending in Canada, 2011
Source: Statistics Canada

Police-reported crime statistics provide a wealth of information on the number and type of criminal offences committed in Canada each year, yet few studies have looked at the issue of co-offending: crimes committed by two or more people. Traditional crime statistics tend to focus on the number of incidents and the characteristics of offenders or victims, and have yet to explore incident characteristics of crimes committed by groups of people.

Co-offences can be categorized into pair crimes, those incidents committed by 2 offenders, and group crimes, which involve 3 or more offenders. Measuring the nature and extent of co-offending is an area of importance as previous studies have shown that co-offences are, on average, more serious than those involving a lone offender (Carrington 2002). Further, pair and group crimes are evidence of collaboration among offenders and play a role in the recruitment of new offenders (van Mastrigt and Farrington 2011).

Using police-reported information from the 2011 Incident-based Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR2) Survey, this Juristat article addresses three key questions related to co-offending:

  1. Prevalence: how many incidents reported by police in 2011 were committed by 2 or more people, and how did this vary over time and by jurisdiction?
  2. Associated factors: which factors (i.e. age, sex, offence type) are associated with increased rates of co-offending?
  3. Seriousness: are co-offending incidents more or less serious compared to incidents committed by a lone accused? The seriousness of an incident can be assessed using many factors, including the use of weapons during the commission of the offence, and injuries incurred by victims, to name a few.

In addition to exploring these three key questions, this Juristat article also examines other areas related to co-offending, including street gangs, and concludes with an examination of the clearance rates of those accused of co-offences.

2011 National Household Survey: Income of Canadians

September 13, 2013 Comments off

2011 National Household Survey: Income of Canadians
Source: Statistics Canada

Close to 70% of Canadians aged 15 and over earned income from employment, representing about three out of every four dollars of total income in Canada.

The percentage of total income earned from employment was highest in the three territories, led by the Northwest Territories at 87.8%. Among the provinces, it ranged from 81.3% in Alberta to 68.6% in Prince Edward Island.

Ontario, with a share of income from employment of 74.8%, was close to the national level of 74.7%. Manitoba and Saskatchewan were slightly above the national level, at 75.4% and 75.6%, respectively.

The employment income shares of the other provinces were below the national level.

Among the country’s census metropolitan areas (CMAs), Calgary and Edmonton had the highest share of employment income in 2010 with 82.2% and 81.3% respectively, followed by Saskatoon (79.1%), Toronto (78.5%), Regina (78.3%) and St. John’s (78.2%)

The three CMAs with the lowest share of income from employment were Trois-Rivières (67.1%), Peterborough (67.0%) and St. Catharines–Niagara (66.6%).

CA — Police-reported crime statistics, 2012

July 30, 2013 Comments off

Police-reported crime statistics, 2012
Source: Statistics Canada

The police-reported crime rate, which measures the overall volume of crime that came to the attention of police, continued a long-term decline in 2012, falling 3% from 2011. The Crime Severity Index (CSI), which measures the severity of crime, also decreased 3%.

Canadian police services reported almost 2 million criminal incidents (excluding traffic) in 2012, about 36,000 fewer than in the previous year.

After peaking in 1991, the police-reported crime rate has followed a downward trend, and, in 2012, reached its lowest level since 1972. The CSI was down 28% over the 10 years since 2002.

The decline in the crime rate in 2012 was driven by decreases in some of the most common offences, including mischief, break and enter, disturbing the peace, motor vehicle theft and possession of stolen property.

Adult criminal court statistics in Canada, 2011/2012

June 20, 2013 Comments off

Adult criminal court statistics in Canada, 2011/2012

Source: Statistics Canada

In Canada, the criminal court system is complex, consisting of multiple levels of court, with responsibilities shared between federal, provincial and territorial governments. Criminal courts are responsible for deciding the culpability of those accused of a criminal or federal statute offence, as well as determining an appropriate sentence should the accused plead or be found guilty (Department of Justice Canada 2005a).

This Juristat article uses data from the 2011/2012 Integrated Criminal Court Survey (ICCS) to report on the characteristics and trends in completed criminal court cases involving adults (18 years and older). More specifically, this Juristat presents the number and types of cases completed in adult criminal courts at both the national and provincial/territorial levels, as well as the characteristics of those appearing in court. Furthermore, the outcomes of completed cases, the sentences imposed and the length of time taken to complete cases are examined.

The data presented in this article exclude information from superior courts in Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan as well as municipal courts in Quebec due to the unavailability of these data. As a result, this report may underestimate the severity of sentences, as well as case elapsed times, since the more serious cases are typically completed in superior courts. In instances where an adult criminal court case involves more than one charge, the case is represented by the most serious offence. Also, due to jurisdictional differences in the structure and operation of courts, which may impact survey results, comparisons between jurisdictions should be made with caution. Other data considerations are noted where applicable.

CA — Police-reported crime statistics, 2011

July 26, 2012 Comments off

Police-reported crime statistics, 2011
Source: Statistics Canada

The police-reported crime rate, which measures the overall volume of crime, continued its long-term downward trend in 2011, declining 6% from 2010. The Crime Severity Index, which measures the severity of crime, also fell 6%.

Adult criminal court statistics in Canada, 2010/2011

June 8, 2012 Comments off

Adult criminal court statistics in Canada, 2010/2011
Source: Statistics Canada
One of the key components of Canada’s criminal justice system is the courts. The criminal court system consists of multiple levels of court with responsibility shared between federal, provincial and territorial governments. Each court is responsible for making decisions regarding the culpability of those accused of a criminal offence. In addition, for those found guilty (or who plead guilty), courts are responsible for determining an appropriate sentence to be imposed (Department of Justice Canada 2005b).

Using data from the adult component of the 2010/2011 Integrated Criminal Court Survey (ICCS), this Juristat article presents information on the characteristics of criminal court cases involving adults (18 years and older).1 More specifically, it examines the number and types of cases completed in adult criminal courts, the decisions made in relation to these cases and the sentences imposed upon those found guilty. In addition, this article looks briefly at the length of time taken to complete adult criminal court cases and the factors that influence timeliness.

It is important to note that the data presented in this article represent approximately 95% of the caseload completed in Canadian adult criminal courts. In 2010/2011, information from superior courts in Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan as well as municipal courts in Quebec (which accounted for about one-quarter of all Criminal Code charges in that province) was unavailable.

Canada — Perspectives on Labour and Income: Youth neither enrolled nor employed

June 8, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Statistics Canada
+ The percentage of all Canadian youth age 15 to 29 that are neither in education nor employment (NEET) has ranged between 12% and 14% over the past decade, a rate that is relatively low among the G7 countries.
+ In 2011, 44% of all youth were students and 43% were employed. The remaining 13% were NEET— 5.7% unemployed and 7.5% not in the labour force (NILF).
+ About 55,000 youth had been looking for a job for more than six months in 2011, representing 1% of all youth and 14% of unemployed youth.
+ Lower levels of education were associated with higher rates of youth unemployment and long-term unemployment.
+ Of the 82% of NILF youth who did not want a job, 5% had future work arrangements, 6% were permanently unable to work, 7% were non-traditional students, 20% had no known activity but had young children at home, and 44% had no known activity and no children at home.

Victimization of older Canadians, 2009

March 16, 2012 Comments off

Victimization of older Canadians, 2009
Source: Statistics Canada

Canadians aged 55 and older constitute one of the fastest growing populations in the country. In the coming decades, it is projected that Canada’s population will continue to age considerably, with the proportion of Canadians aged 55 and older rising from 27% in 2011 to 35% in 2031 (Statistics Canada 2010a). This is due to a variety of factors, including aging baby boomers, decreasing fertility rates and an increase in life expectancy (Schellenberg and Turcotte 2007).

This shift in Canada’s age structure has numerous implications for Canadian society, including impacts on the economy, the healthcare system, and social services (Certified General Accountants Association of Canada 2005). The aging population is also expected to impact Canada’s justice system in a variety of sectors, including policing, corrections and victim services (Payne 2005; CSC 2010).

Historically, older Canadians have reported some of the lowest victimization rates (Ogrodnik 2007); however, some studies have suggested that victimization against seniors will increase as the population expands (Sev’er 2009). Conversely, other research suggests that rates of victimization will decrease, as younger groups most at risk for victimization age (Boe 2010; Carrington 2001). In recent years, the Canadian government has developed initiatives aimed at meeting the needs of older victims and helping to inform policy decisions related to victimization and abuse (National Seniors Council 2007).

Using data from the 2009 General Social Survey (GSS) on Victimization, this Juristat article examines trends in the victimization of older Canadians, namely those aged 55 and older living in the 10 provinces.1,2 In addition to examining the nature and prevalence of both violent victimization and household victimization against older Canadians, this Juristat article explores older Canadians’ experiences of emotional and financial abuse and their experiences of Internet victimization. Finally, this study examines reporting of victimization incidents to police, the emotional and financial consequences of victimization, as well as older Canadians’ perceptions of personal safety, their sense of community belonging, and their use of crime prevention methods among both victims and non-victims.

Canadians’ perceptions of personal safety and crime, 2009

December 6, 2011 Comments off

Canadians’ perceptions of personal safety and crime, 2009
Source: Statistics Canada

The effects of crime are vast and varied, and may result in many physical, financial, and emotional consequences for those directly involved. Moreover, the effects of crime can extend beyond victims (Jackson 2006, Gardner 2008). Previous research has shown that indirect exposure to crime can impact feelings of security within entire communities, and may create a fear of crime. Fear of crime refers to the fear, rather than the probability, of being a victim of crime, and may not be reflective of the actual prevalence of crime (Fitzgerald 2008).

Self-reported victimization data have shown that, in Canada, rates of victimization have remained stable over the past decade (Perreault and Brennan 2010). In the same vein, police-reported data has shown decreases in both the amount and severity of crime, with the crime rate reaching its lowest point since 1973 (Brennan and Dauvergne 2011). Despite these findings, crime continues to remain an issue of concern for many Canadians.

Using data from the 2009 General Social Survey (GSS) on Victimization, this Juristat article examines the perceptions of personal safety and crime of Canadians 15 years and older living in the 10 provinces. More specifically, it looks at their overall level of satisfaction with their personal safety from crime over time at the national, provincial and census metropolitan area levels. In addition, this article examines Canadians’ feelings of safety when performing various activities in their communities, and their use of crime prevention techniques in the previous 12 months. Finally, Canadians’ perceptions of the prevalence of crime and social disorder in their neighbourhoods are explored.

Homicide in Canada, 2010

November 10, 2011 Comments off

Homicide in Canada, 2010
Source: Statistics Canada

Homicide in Canada is a relatively rare event. In 2010, there were 554 homicides in Canada—representing less than 1% of violent incidents reported to police (Brennan and Dauvergne 2011). Information gathered from the Homicide Survey plays an important role in measuring crime in Canada, particularly in identifying trends over time. Homicide is more likely than other crimes to be reported to police, to be the subject of thorough investigation and, in turn, to be captured in official statistics (Nivette 2011; Van Dijk 2008; Gannon et al. 2005). For this reason, the rate of homicide has been viewed as a “social barometer” and as one indicator of the health of a nation (Marshall and Block 2004).

This Juristat article presents 2010 homicide data, marking the 50th consecutive year for which this information has been collected by Statistics Canada. Trends in gang-related homicide, homicides involving firearms, homicides by youth, and intimate partner homicide are highlighted. This report also presents a profile of homicides involving accused persons with a suspected mental or developmental disorder.

Canada — Health Indicators 2011

November 2, 2011 Comments off

Health Indicators 2011 (PDF)
Source: Statistics Canada (Canadian Institute for Health Information)

Health Indicators 2011, the 12th in a series of annual flagship reports, presents the most recent data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) and Statistics Canada on a broad range of measures. This report seeks to answer two fundamental questions: “How healthy are Canadians?” and “How healthy is the Canadian health system?” The indicators were selected based on directions provided at three National Consensus Conferences on Health Indicators.

Each indicator falls into one of the five dimensions of the internationally recognized Health Indicator Framework:

  • Health status — provides insight into the health of Canadians, including well-being, human function and selected health conditions.
  • Non-medical determinants of health — reflects factors outside of the health system that affect health.
  • Health system performance — provides insight into the quality of health services, including accessibility, appropriateness, effectiveness and patient safety.
  • Community and health system characteristics — useful contextual information, rather than direct measures of health status or quality of care.
  • Equity – provides insight into health disparities.

In addition to presenting the latest indicator results, this year’s report introduces three new indicators that are focused on mental health. In Canada, as in many countries, mental illnesses are among the 20 leading causes of disability and are associated with death by suicide. Seventy percent of mental illnesses develop at a young age, they often persist over time and they affect people of all cultures and socio-economic status. They are also costly to the health system. In Canada, when taking into account costs associated with the reduction in health-related quality of life, loss of productivity in the workplace and direct costs of mental health services and supports, the economic impact of mental illnesses was estimated to be $52 billion in 2006 by the Institute of Health Economics.

Money laundering in Canada, 2009

July 13, 2011 Comments off

Money laundering in Canada, 2009
Source: Statistics Canada

In recent years, the issue of money laundering has been highlighted as an emerging problem both in Canada and internationally (FINTRAC 2011). In Canada, it is estimated that the amount of money laundered on an annual basis is somewhere between $5 and $15 billion (RCMP 2011). Worldwide, it has been estimated that this figure may be as high as $500 billion to $1 trillion in U.S. currency (FINTRAC 2011).

According to the Criminal Code, money laundering, also referred to as laundering proceeds of crime, occurs when an individual or group uses, transfers, sends, delivers, transports, transmits, alters, disposes of or otherwise deals with, any property or proceeds of any property that was obtained as a result of criminal activity. This is done with the intent to conceal or convert illegal assets into legitimate funds.

An example of money laundering would involve a person who sells illegal drugs, and then uses the profit to purchase legal goods to sell through a legitimate business. Previous research suggests that money laundering schemes are often associated with the illegal drug trade or the defrauding and manipulation of Canada’s financial institutions (FINTRAC2011). Some authorities, including the RCMP, have found that money laundering is often related to organized criminal and/or terrorist activity (FINTRAC 2011RCMP 2011).

Police-reported hate crime in Canada, 2009

July 2, 2011 Comments off

Police-reported hate crime in Canada, 2009
Source: Statistics Canada

The composition of Canada’s cultural, social, linguistic and religious population is rapidly changing. Between the two most recent census years (2001 and 2006), for example, the proportion of visible minorities in Canada grew 27% while those whose mother tongue was neither French nor English rose 18% (Statistics Canada 2008). Over the same period, the number of same-sex couples, including legally married and common-law partners, increased 33% (Milan, Vézina and Wells 2009). Furthermore, between 1991 and 2001, Canada’s religious make-up changed, with some of the largest increases among those who reported Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist denominations (Statistics Canada 2003).

With such diversity in the country, discrimination or bias can arise (Boeckmann and Turpin-Petrosino 2002). Some of these incidents may occur in the form of hate crimes, defined as criminal offences motivated by hate towards an identifiable group. Hate crimes may target race, colour, national or ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, language, sex, age, or any other similar factor (such as profession or political beliefs).

The importance of collecting data on hate crimes has been recognized throughout the world. According to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, 47 of 56 participating countries across North America, Europe and Asia compile at least some data on hate crimes (OSCE 2010). In Canada, data on hate crimes are collected by Statistics Canada via the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Survey.

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