Published: Fri, August 04, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

More than one in four families lone-parent

More than one in four families lone-parent

The evolving living arrangements and families of Canadians can also have consequences, for example on the housing market, on caregiving and care receiving and on intergenerational relationships.

According to Statistics Canada, the average family household in 1871 was 5.6 people.

There were 14.1 million private households in Canada in 2016, 9.5 million (67.7%) of which were composed of at least one census family. "It measured common-law unions for the first time in 1981, same-sex couples in 2001, and foster children and stepfamilies in 2011".

Today, about 12 per cent of all same-sex couples are living with children, be they biological offspring, adopted or members of a stepfamily.

In Canada, the rate of one-person households stands at an all time high of 28.2 per cent-but in Nunavut, this is less comnon, with one-person households at about one in five or 18.9 per cent. The share of Canadians living by themselves has quadrupled since the mid-20th century, from just under two per cent of the total population in 1951 to 14 per cent in 2016.

In terms of marital status, data shows that 345,335 residents are married or in common law relationships, with 319,385 married couples and 25,950 common law couples.

Single-person households were also the most common type of household in Canada in 2016. "Depression certainly being one of them". The percentages were still higher in Sweden (36.2% in 2011), Norway (40.0% in 2012) and Germany (41.4% in 2015). In fact, the Atlantic provinces recorded the lowest shares of couples with children in 2016.

Recently released census data shows a Canada (and Mississauga) that's shifting, changing and embracing "new normals" as far as living and family situations are concerned.

The number of people who reported being divorced was up in all of the Atlantic provinces in 2016, compared to 2011. Twelve percent of same-sex couples had children living with them.

There are more Canadians who say they are bilingual than at any point into Canadian history. As the Baby Boomer generation (Canadians born between 1946 and 1965) has aged, their children have grown up and left home.

Nova Scotia led the pack with 85,275 common law couples past year, up from 77,075. In general, cities with a higher-than-average proportion of young adults living with parents are found in the Greater Toronto Area and B.C.'s Lower Mainland.

These were the fastest growing type of household counted in the 2016 census. Households with at least three generations of the same family has been the fastest growing type of household since 2001, growing 38 per cent over that time. Some 2.2 million Canadians lived in a multigenerational household in 2016.

Statistics Canada said the changes reflect demographic shifts including "population ageing and increasing ethnocultural diversity, as well as social, economic and legislative changes".

Such arrangements are very common in China and many continue the practice after they immigrate, she added.

And where it was previously assumed that those 20-somethings would move back out after landing on their feet, Spinks said the latest data show many have continued to live with their parents even after forming unions of their own or having children.

Non-census-family households of two or more persons, such as roommates or siblings living together, and other family households (two or more census families living together or one census family living with other people, after excluding multigenerational households) also rose sharply.

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