Video - A portrait of Canada’s families

Release date:
A portrait of Canada’s families - Video transcript

(The Statistics Canada symbol and Canada wordmark appear on screen with the title: "A portrait of Canada’s families")

A portrait of Canada’s families

On July 13, 2022, Statistics Canada released information about families, households, and marital status from the 2021 Census.

This was also Statistics Canada’s first census release on the gender diversity status of couples. Samegender, transgender or non-binary couples represented 1.5% of all couples in Canada.

15% of all adults, or people aged 15 and older in private households, lived alone in 2021. This is the highest share on record.

The share of people aged 35 to 44 who live alone doubled from 5% in 1981 to 10% in 2021.

Households composed of roommates—two or more people living together, among which none are part of a census family—increased by 54% from 2001 to 2021.

Nearly 1 million households in 2021 were composed of multiple generations of a family, two or more census families, or one census family living with additional persons not in a census family.

35% of young adults aged 20 to 34 were living in the same household as at least one of their parents, unchanged from 2016.

9% of children aged 0 to 14 in census families were living in the same household as at least one of their grandparents in 2021.

Among children living in a one-parent family, 21% in 2021 were living with their father, up from 14% in 1981.

Over half a million children aged 0 to 14 lived in a stepfamily in 2021.

There were 26,675 foster children aged 0 to 14 in 2021, down 10% from 2011.

57% of adults were part of a couple, similar to the proportion 100 years earlier.

The share of older adults in a couple has increased, reflecting gains in men’s life expectancy. 39% of people aged 20 to 29 were in a couple in 2021, compared to 68% in 1981.

Canada has the highest share of common law couples in the G7. From 1981 to 2021, the number of common-law couples increased by 447%, compared to 26% for married couples.

Still, in 2021, 77% of couples were married, with the remaining 23% living common law.

43% of common law couples are in Quebec. Living common law drops sharply after young adulthood in other provinces, but not in Quebec.

For the first time, the majority of couples in Nunavut, 52%, were living common law.

Half of married or common-law couples had children of any age living with them, down from 64% in 1981.

Definitions and concepts, as well as data at the provincial, territorial and subprovincial levels, are in the 2021 Census Daily release of July 13, 2022.

(The Canada wordmark is on screen.)