The Aboriginal labour force in Western Canada
Jacqueline Luffman and Deborah Sussman
- By the end of 2017, Aboriginal persons of working age (15 and older) are expected to number close to a million—about 3.4% of the working-age population. In Western Canada, Aboriginal (off-reserve) employment grew 23% between 2001 and 2005, compared with only 11% for non-Aboriginals.
- While the unemployment rate gap narrowed over the period, the Aboriginal rate remained 2.5 times that of the non-Aboriginal labour force in 2005.
- The effect of postsecondary education on employment is particularly strong for Aboriginal women with a university degree. Indeed, these women had an employment rate 11 percentage points higher than non-Aboriginal women.
- Most of the growth in the Western off-reserve Aboriginal labour force was dominated by the three largest occupational sectors: sales and service (35%); business, finance and administration (19%); and trades, transport and equipment operators (18%).
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Jacqueline Luffman is with Dissemination Division. She can be reached at 613-951-1563. Deborah Sussman is with the Labour and Household Surveys Analysis Division. She can be reached at 613-951-4226. Both can be reached at email@example.com.
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