LGBTQ Population 2024

LGBTQ Population 2024

LGBTQ Population 2024

A recent report by Statistics Canada sheds light on Canada’s LGBTQ community, which now comprises approximately one million individuals. Interestingly, a significant portion of this population—particularly those under 25—identifies as LGBTQ.

Statistics Canada has been collecting data on the LGBTQ population since 2003, revealing a notable age distribution. Around 30 percent of LGBTQ Canadians fall within the 15 to 24 age bracket, which represents only 14 percent of the non-LGBTQ population. Conversely, individuals aged 65 and older make up just seven percent of the LGBTQ community compared to 21 percent of the non-LGBTQ population.

The report highlights significant legal and societal changes impacting LGBTQ Canadians in the 21st century, including the legalization of same-sex marriage and enhanced protections for gender identity and expression in the Canadian Human Rights Act.

Statistics Canada suggests that these policy changes have contributed to a substantial increase in the number of same-sex couples in Canada, which grew by 60.7 percent from 2006 to 2016.

“This increase may be reflective, at least in part, of growing awareness and acceptance of sexual diversity in Canada,” the report concludes.

Hate crimes and economic challenges

Despite indications of growth within Canada’s LGBTQ community, the report also highlights concerning threats faced by LGBTQ Canadians. One such threat is the recent surge in hate crimes targeting individuals based on their sexual orientation.

In 2019, police reported 263 such incidents, marking a 41 percent increase from the previous year and the highest total since 2009. More than half of these reported incidents involved violent crimes.

Additionally, LGBTQ Canadians may have experienced heightened economic hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to non-LGBTQ individuals. The report notes that the 15 to 24 age group, which constitutes a significant portion of the LGBTQ population, experienced the most job losses during the pandemic. This suggests that LGBTQ Canadians may have been disproportionately affected by unemployment.

On average, LGBTQ Canadians have lower annual incomes than their non-LGBTQ counterparts, earning $39,000 compared to $58,000. This income gap could be attributed in part to the large number of young people within the LGBTQ population, who typically have lower earning potential.

Canada’s LGBTQ Population

To address information gaps and improve reporting on Canada’s LGBTQ population, Statistics Canada has pledged to focus more on transgender individuals. The 2021 census included a question for the first time about respondents’ “gender” in addition to their sex at birth. This two-step approach aims to provide reliable data on the transgender population, including gender non-binary individuals, and enhance understanding of gender diversity in Canada.

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