Fewer Nunavummiut couples married, more have children

Nunavut has 30 same-sex couples: census


The tally is in and Nunavut is home to 30 of Canada's 46,000 same-sex couples.

The 2006 census marks the first time same-sex couples were counted since same-sex marriage was legalized across Canada in 2005.

By contrast, there are nearly 5,100 opposite-sex couples in Nunavut, according to the most recent batch of data from the 2006 census released by Statistics Canada Sept. 12.

The 2006 census also marks the first time married people are outnumbered by the unmarried: 51.5 per cent of Canada's population has never married, divorced, separated or been widowed. In 1986, the study notes, that figure was 38.6 per cent.

The figures also show Nunavut leads Canada in unmarried couples with children.

More than 33 per cent of Nunavut couples are in common-law relationships with children, far above the national average of 8.3 per cent, and well beyond the next highest figures of 19.8 per cent in the Northwest Territories and 17.7 per cent in Quebec.

Still, Nunavut's proportion of married couples with children, 46.4 per cent, is close to the national average of 46 per cent. Quebec had the lowest share of such couples at 34 per cent, while Ontario had the highest at 52.8 per cent.

Nunavut's share of married childless couples was 10.3 per cent – well below the national average of 35.6 per cent. The smallest group of couples – childless common-law couples-made up 10.1 per cent of Nunavut couples. That's the same as the Canadian national average.

Couples with children represented 42.7 per cent of Nunavut households, well above the national average of 31.4 per cent. Meanwhile, the number of Nunavut households without children was 10.2 per cent, by far the lowest rate in the country. Nunavut also had the lowest share of single-person households in Canada, at 18.3 per cent.

Notably, Nunavut also had the highest share of households described in the data as "other." That category consists of "multiple-family households, lone-parent family households and non-family households other than one-person households." The share of Nunavut households that fall into this category is 28.8 per cent-nearly double the Canadian average, and likely a result of the territory's housing shortage which often creates ad hoc living arrangements.

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