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Where Are Canada’s Safest Cities?

Statistics Canada has released their census of the nation’s safest cities and provinces.

Police-reported crime in Canada is measured by two things: the Crime Severity Index (CSI) and the crime rate. CSI is measured by the volume and seriousness of a crime compared to others. In 2015, the CSI increased by 5 per cent — the first increase Canada has seen in 12 years. However, even with this increase, crime is still 31 per cent lower than it was in 2005. According to Statistics Canada, more reports of fraud, breaking and entering, robbery, and homicide were the primary reasons for the increase. Canada’s non-violence CSI also increased by 4 per cent, according to the study.

The same report also showed that the safest cities (those with the lowest rime rates and CSIs) in Canada were all in Ontario and Québec.

Québec City came in as Canada’s safest city with a CSI of 41.8. Close behind was Barrie, at 43.3, making it the second-safest city nationwide, and the safest in Ontario.

Barrie’s CSI went down by 1 per cent from the year before. Québec City decreased their CSI by 6 per cent, tying them in second-place with Sherbrooke for the largest crime decreases of the year. Thunder Bay takes first place by far, decreasing their CSI by 11 per cent. However, even such such a huge change, the northern city still had a high CSI at 80.1

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Other notable cities with low CSIs include Toronto (45.5), Ottawa (46.5), Guelph (48.4), and Sherbrooke (49.2). The provinces with the lowest overall CSIs were Prince Edward Island (49.7), Ontario (50.6), and Québec (55.7).

To contrast, Western Canada has been steadily reporting some of the highest numbers since 2010. Saskatchewan had the highest provincial CSI, at 135.8. The census also shows that Saskatchewan had the highest provincial crime rate, with 11,178 incidents per 100,000 people. Manitoba had the second-highest provincial CSI, at 104.3. Alberta’s CSI was also very close, with 102.3 and an 18 per cent increase from the year before.

The Northwest Territories have also reported high CSIs with 319.0, making it the highest anywhere in the country. The territory also had the highest national crime rate, with 44,316 incidents per 100,000 people.

Click here to view the full report from Statistics Canada.

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