Statistics Canada released new data on murder rates across the country and have found they’re the lowest they’ve been since 1966.
Data taken in 2013 and 2014 found the homicide rate was stable at 1.45 per 100,000 people. Five provinces boasted fewer murders in 2014: Ontario, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
The decline in Nova Scotia was so great, they recorded the lowest numbers they’ve had since Statistics Canada’s Homicide Survey began collecting data in 1961.
A total of 516 murders were recorded across Canada in 2014, according to Canadian police services, which represents four more than 2013, a statistically small number that leaves the rate unaffected.
B.C., however, had 12 more murders in 2014 compared to 2013. Alberta showed a marked increase in homicides – there were 22 more. Manitoba continued to have the highest murder rate in the country for the 8th year in a row.
As well, murders of Aboriginal people were six times higher than non-Aboriginal people. Almost a quarter of all murders in Canada were Aboriginal people, who represent just five per cent of the population. The murder rate of Aboriginal women remains unchanged since 1980, while it declines for the rest of the population.
In B.C., the rate of Aboriginal murders is three times higher than non-Aboriginal homicides.
When it comes to murder accusations, over 30 per cent were Aboriginal people. Aboriginal women represent more than half of all female murder accusations.
Despite the low national homicide rate, firearm murders were on the rise last year, with police reporting 156 firearm-related homicides, 21 more than in 2013.