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Indicators of Well-being in Canada


Security - Crime Rates

Relevance

Crime rates provide a measure of the prevalence and types of crime in Canada. Crimes are typically divided into two broad categories: crimes of violence that involve harm or threats of harm to people (including homicide) and property crimes that involve theft of goods or money without threat or harm to the victim.

The rates of both types of crime and changes in those rates over time are a basic reflection of security and safety in Canadian society.

Summary

  • National Picture — With only 5,588 incidents per 100,000 people in 2012, Canada's national crime rate reached its lowest level since 1972. The rate of violent crime in Canada was 1,190 incidents per 100,000 people, its lowest level since 1998. The rate of property crime, for its part, was 3,414 incidents per 100,000 people, the lowest since 1998.
  • Regions — In 2012, both the rate of violent crime and the rate of property crime were higher in northern and western Canada than in the eastern part of the country.
  • Large Urban Areas — In 2012, rates of violent crime were generally higher in the large urban centres of western Canada than in those of the east. Likewise, the rates of property crime were generally higher in the large urban centres of western Canada than in those of the east.
  • Homicide Rates — The homicide rate has generally been declining since 1975 (3.03 victims per 100,000 people), and further dropped from 1.73 to 1.56 between 2011 and 2012. Canada's homicide rate was about one-third the United States' rate (4.67), but more than four times the Japanese rate (0.35).

National Picture

In 2012, Canadian police services reported just under 2.0 million Criminal Code incidents (excluding traffic), which is approximately 36,000 (or 3.0%) fewer than in 2011. Canada's national crime rate has been falling steadily since the early 1990s and reached, in 2012, its lowest level since 1972.[1] From 1998 to 2012, the total crime rate declined from 8,092 to 5,588 incidents per 100,000 people.


This Chart contains data for Crime Rate, Canada, 1998-2012. Information is available in table below 2012 = 5,588.11 2011 = 5,755.69 2010 = 6,136.98 2009 = 6,442.36 2008 = 6,616.55 2007 = 6,899.26 2006 = 7,243.98 2005 = 7,325.04 2004 = 7,599.62 2003 = 7,770.25 2002 = 7,512.11 2001 = 7,586.73 2000 = 7,606.79 1999 = 7,694.33 1998 = 8,091.73 (per 100,000 people) Crime Rate, Canada, 1998-2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Crime Rate, Canada, 1998-2012 (per 100,000 people)
199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012
8,091.737,694.337,606.797,586.737,512.117,770.257,599.627,325.047,243.986,899.266,616.556,442.366,136.985,755.695,588.11

After rising from 1,345 to 1,494 incidents per 100,000 people between 1998 and 2000, the rate of violent crime then dropped steadily to reach its lowest level in the past 14 years in 2012, namely 1,190 incidents per 100,000 people.


This Chart contains data for Violent crimes, Canada, 1998-2012. Information is available in table below 2012 = 1,190.12 2011 = 1,230.54 2010 = 1,287.03 2009 = 1,318.04 2008 = 1,331.45 2007 = 1,352.22 2006 = 1,386.45 2005 = 1,388.91 2004 = 1,404.21 2003 = 1,434.79 2002 = 1,440.77 2001 = 1,473.43 2000 = 1,494.21 1999 = 1,440.12 1998 = 1,344.85 (per 100,000 people) Violent crimes, Canada, 1998-2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Violent crimes, Canada, 1998-2012 (per 100,000 people)
199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012
1,344.851,440.121,494.211,473.431,440.771,434.791,404.211,388.911,386.451,352.221,331.451,318.041,287.031,230.541,190.12

In terms of the breakdown by type of violent crime, in 2012, assault accounted for 57.0% of all violent crimes, followed by uttering threats (17.0%), robbery (6.7%) and sexual assault (5.3%).[2]

Rates of property crime dropped by over one third over the past 14 years from 5,696 incidents per 100,000 people in 1998 to 3,414 in 2012.

This Chart contains data for Property crimes, Canada, 1998-2012. Information is available in table below 2012 = 3,414.44 2011 = 3,521.38 2010 = 3,824.44 2009 = 4,110.02 2008 = 4,248.71 2007 = 4,519.33 2006 = 4,808.18 2005 = 4,883.85 2004 = 5,123.13 2003 = 5,298.54 2002 = 5,080.05 2001 = 5,124.03 2000 = 5,188.88 1999 = 5,344.59 1998 = 5,696.02 (per 100,000 people) Property crimes, Canada, 1998-2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Property crimes, Canada, 1998-2012 (per 100,000 people)
199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012
5,696.025,344.595,188.885,124.035,080.055,298.545,123.134,883.854,808.184,519.334,248.714,110.023,824.443,521.383,414.44

In terms of specific types of property offences, in 2012, theft of property other than vehicles accounted for 43.0% of all property crime, followed by mischief (25.6%), breaking and entering (14.8%), fraud (6.6%), motor vehicle theft (6.5%) and possession of stolen goods (1.4%).[3]


Regions

In 2012, the rates of violent crime were highest in Nunavut (10,004 incidents per 100,000 people), the Northwest Territories (7,993) and Yukon (4,036). The remaining regions, the rates tended to be higher in the West than in the East. Ontario, Quebec and Prince Edward Island were the only regions to have a rate of violent crime below the national average of 1,190 incidents per 100,000 people.


This Chart contains data for Violent crimes, by region, 2012. Information is available in table below NU = 10,004 NT = 7,993 YT = 4,036 BC = 1,382 AB = 1,382 SK = 2,201 MB = 2,041 ON = 901 QC = 1,047 NB = 1,476 NS = 1,366 PE = 1,168 NL = 1,539 CAN = 1,190 (per 100,000 people) Violent crimes, by region, 2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Violent crimes, by region, 2012 (per 100,000 people)
CANNLPENSNBQCONMBSKABBCYTNTNU
1,1901,5391,1681,3661,4761,0479012,0412,2011,3821,3824,0367,99310,004

In 2012, rates of property crime were higher in the territories and the western provinces than in Canada's eastern provinces. The rates of property crime were highest in the Northwest Territories (24,024 incidents per 100,000 people), Nunavut (16,580) and Yukon (8,667). Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick were the only regions to have a rate of property crime below the national average of 3,414 crimes per 100,000 people.


This Chart contains data for Property crimes, by region, 2012. Information is available in table below NU = 16,580 NT = 24,024 YT = 8,667 BC = 4,711 AB = 4,294 SK = 6,190 MB = 4,872 ON = 2,622 QC = 2,703 NB = 3,230 NS = 3,933 PE = 4,586 NL = 3,674 CAN = 3,414 (per 100,000 people) Property crimes, by region, 2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Property crimes, by region, 2012 (per 100,000 people)
CANNLPENSNBQCONMBSKABBCYTNTNU
3,4143,6744,5863,9333,2302,7032,6224,8726,1904,2944,7118,66724,02416,580

Large Urban Areas

In 2012, the rates of violent crime were generally below the national average of 1,190 incidents per 100,000 people in the large urban areas of Ontario and Quebec and above the average in the large urban areas of western Canada. The rates were particularly high in Saskatoon (1,473), Regina (1,367) and Winnipeg (1,265), while Calgary had the lowest rate (735) among all of Canada's large urban areas.

This Chart contains data for Violent crimes, large urban areas, 2012. Information is available in table below Victoria, BC = 1,119 Vancouver, BC = 1,125 Edmonton, AB = 1,210 Calgary, AB = 735 Saskatoon, SK = 1,473 Regina, SK = 1,367 Winnipeg, MB = 1,265 Windsor, ON = 970 London, ON = 890 Kitchener, ON = 912 St.Catharines-Niagara, ON = 814 Hamilton, ON = 857 Toronto, ON = 809 Ottawa-Gatineau, ON/QC = 799 Montral, QC = 959 Qubec, QC = 876 Halifax, NS = 1,148 Canada = 1,190 (per 100,000 people) Violent crimes, large urban areas, 2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Violent crimes, large urban areas, 2012 (per 100,000 people)
CanadaHalifax, NSQubec, QCMontral, QCOttawa-Gatineau, ON/QCToronto, ONHamilton, ONSt.Catharines-Niagara, ONKitchener, ONLondon, ONWindsor, ONWinnipeg, MBRegina, SKSaskatoon, SKCalgary, ABEdmonton, ABVancouver, BCVictoria, BC
1,1901,1488769597998098578149128909701,2651,3671,4737351,2101,1251,119

Like the rates of violent crime, the rates of property crime were generally below the national average of 3,414 incidents per 100,000 people in the large urban areas of Ontario and Quebec and above the average in the large urban areas of western Canada. Of the Canadian large urban centres, it was in Regina (4,988), Saskatoon (4,685) and Vancouver (4,682) that the highest rates of property crime were observed, whereas it was in Toronto (2,067) and Quebec City (2,099) that the lowest rates were observed.

This Chart contains data for Property crimes, large urban areas, 2012. Information is available in table below Victoria, BC = 4,082 Vancouver, BC = 4,682 Edmonton, AB = 3,955 Calgary, AB = 3,177 Saskatoon, SK = 4,685 Regina, SK = 4,988 Winnipeg, MB = 4,243 Windsor, ON = 3,245 London, ON = 3,620 Kitchener, ON = 3,016 St.Catharines-Niagara, ON = 3,228 Hamilton, ON = 2,989 Toronto, ON = 2,067 Ottawa-Gatineau, ON/QC = 2,896 Montral, QC = 3,041 Qubec, QC = 2,099 Halifax, NS = 3,765 Canada = 3,414 (per 100,000 people) Property crimes, large urban areas, 2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Property crimes, large urban areas, 2012 (per 100,000 people)
CanadaHalifax, NSQubec, QCMontral, QCOttawa-Gatineau, ON/QCToronto, ONHamilton, ONSt.Catharines-Niagara, ONKitchener, ONLondon, ONWindsor, ONWinnipeg, MBRegina, SKSaskatoon, SKCalgary, ABEdmonton, ABVancouver, BCVictoria, BC
3,4143,7652,0993,0412,8962,0672,9893,2283,0163,6203,2454,2434,9884,6853,1773,9554,6824,082

Homicide Rates

Homicide, considered to be the most serious of all criminal acts, is more likely than most other crimes to be discovered and thoroughly investigated. What constitutes homicide is also fairly well understood throughout Canada and the rest of the world. The homicide rate is thus considered by some to be a more reliable "barometer" of violence in society and a better comparative measure of violence across different societies than are rates of other crimes or offences.

Homicide rates for Canada are available from 1961 onwards. Between 1961 and 1975, the national homicide rate more than doubled, rising from 1.28 to 3.03 homicides per 100,000 people. Despite some annual fluctuations, Canada's homicide rate declined steadily in the 25 years after peaking in 1975, then attained a degree of stability over the past decade. In 2012, there were 543 (1.56 per 100,000) homicides in Canada, down from 598 (1.73 per 100,000) homicides in 2011. This is the lowest rate since 1966. 


This Chart contains data for Homicides, Canada, 1961-2012. Information is available in table below 2012 = 1.6 2011 = 1.7 2010 = 1.6 2009 = 1.8 2008 = 1.8 2007 = 1.8 2006 = 1.9 2005 = 2.1 2004 = 1.9 2003 = 1.7 2002 = 1.9 2001 = 1.8 2000 = 1.8 1999 = 1.8 1998 = 1.9 1997 = 2.0 1996 = 2.1 1995 = 2.0 1994 = 2.1 1993 = 2.2 1992 = 2.6 1991 = 2.7 1990 = 2.4 1989 = 2.4 1988 = 2.1 1987 = 2.4 1986 = 2.2 1985 = 2.7 1984 = 2.6 1983 = 2.7 1982 = 2.7 1981 = 2.6 1980 = 2.4 1979 = 2.6 1978 = 2.8 1977 = 3.0 1976 = 2.9 1975 = 3.0 1974 = 2.6 1973 = 2.4 1972 = 2.3 1971 = 2.1 1970 = 2.2 1969 = 1.9 1968 = 1.8 1967 = 1.7 1966 = 1.3 1965 = 1.4 1964 = 1.3 1963 = 1.3 1962 = 1.4 1961 = 1.3 (per 100,000 people) Homicides, Canada, 1961-2012

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 253-0001 - Homicide survey, number and rates (per 100,000 population) of homicide victims, Canada, provinces and territories, annual, CANSIM (database).


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Homicides, Canada, 1961-2012 (per 100,000 people)
1961196219631964196519661967196819691970197119721973197419751976197719781979198019811982198319841985198619871988198919901991199219931994199519961997199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012
1.31.41.31.31.41.31.71.81.92.22.12.32.42.63.02.93.02.82.62.42.62.72.72.62.72.22.42.12.42.42.72.62.22.12.02.12.01.91.81.81.81.91.71.92.11.91.81.81.81.61.71.6

Canada's homicide rate was compared to the most recent rate available for various countries with an economic development level similar to Canada's. From that comparison, it appears that Canada's homicide rate was significantly below the United States' rate (4.67) and also below those of Norway (2.25), Finland (2.15) and Belgium (1.84). Yet it was above the rate of five G7 countries: Japan (0.35), Germany (0.81), Italy (0.91), United Kingdom (0.96) and France (1.18).


This Chart contains data for Homicides, G7 countries and selected countries, 2011-2012. Information is available in table below Japan (2011) = 0.35 Germany (2011) = 0.81 Italy (2011) = 0.91 United Kingdom (2011) = 0.96 France (2011) = 1.18 Canada (2012) = 1.60 Belgium (2011) = 1.84 Finland (2011) = 2.15 Norway (2011) = 2.25 United States (2011) = 4.67 (per 100,000 people) Homicides, G7 countries and selected countries, 2011-2012

Source: Statistics Canada. "Homicide in Canada, 2012", Chart 4 Homicides rates, by peer countries, 2012, Juristat, Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Justics Statistics, Catalogue no. 85-002-X, 2013.


Warning: This data table may contain very wide content. Horizontal scrolling may be necessary.

Homicides, G7 countries and selected countries, 2011-2012 (per 100,000 people)
United States (2011)Norway (2011)Finland (2011)Belgium (2011)Canada (2012)France (2011)United Kingdom (2011)Italy (2011)Germany (2011)Japan (2011)
4.672.252.151.841.601.180.960.910.810.35

Footnotes

  1. Statistics Canada. "Police-reported crime statistics in Canada, 2012," Juristat, Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Catalogue no. 85-002-X, 2013.

    [Back to Text]
  2. ESDC calculations based on Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).

    [Back to Text]
  3. ESDC calculations based on Statistics Canada. Table 252-0051 - Incident-based crime statistics, by detailed violations, annual (number unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database).

    [Back to Text]

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Date Modified:
2014-11-28