A quarter of Canadians say they have experienced racism

Canada’s population is made up of many races, ethnicities, genders and backgrounds who still face varying degrees of discrimination on a daily basis. A quarter of Canadians say they have experienced racism, and nearly half of respondents in a recent study said that Canada is facing a racism problem. In 2017, Canada appeared before the United Nation’s Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination to defend their stance on fighting racial discrimination. The panel concluded there was concern over the high rates of incarceration of Indigenous people. There was also concern over the detention of asylum seekers and racial profiling by police.

Fast Facts

  • Hate crimes against Muslims in Canada increased 253% over 4 years.

  • The most violent crimes in 2017 targeted sexual orientation.

  • 1 in 5 Canadians have been discriminated against at work because of their gender.

  • Despite encompassing less than 5% of the total Canadian population, Indigenous people make up 27% of the federal prison population.

Finding a solution

Over the past 25 years Canada has seen an increase in minority groups, immigration and an overall greater diversity. We pride ourselves on being tolerant and multicultural, but these qualities don’t make us immune to discrimination. To get rid of discrimination we need to first acknowledge that it’s a problem. We need to have more workplace diversity training, continue research and data collection on discrimination, and work together to dismantle harmful prejudices.

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