By now most households in Canada have received an invitation from Statistics Canada to complete the 2021 Census. This is a crucial survey, the results of which will form the basis for innumerable government, business, and civic society decisions that will affect all Canadians for the next five to 10 years.
One quarter of Canadian households will be asked to complete the long form, which includes many demographic questions, including one question about religion.
Statistics Canada writes, “A question on religion has been included on the decennial Census of Population since 1871, reflecting a long-standing, continuing and widespread demand for information about religious affiliation and diversity in Canada. Information on the religion of the population is commonly used by governments, as well as by religious groups, denominations and associations across the country. For example, it is used to assess the need and potential for separate religious schools in some provinces.”
As such, CFIC believes that an accurate count of Canada’s non-believing population is essential. Unfortunately, the question about religion is deeply misleading. Question 30 on the long form asks:
What is this person’s religion?
Indicate a specific denomination or religion even if this person is not currently a practising member of that group.
For example, Roman Catholic, United Church, Anglican, Muslim, Baptist, Hindu, Pentecostal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Sikh, Buddhist, Jewish, Greek Orthodox, etc.
For additional examples of denominations and religions, visit www12.statcan.gc.ca/religion-e
- Specify one denomination or religion only
- No religion
If you are “not currently a practising member of” any religion, CFIC encourages you to select “No religion” on the 2021 Census, regardless of how you were raised, previous beliefs, or cultural affiliation. Accurately reflecting the extent of non-belief in Canada will give atheist, agnostic, non-believing, freethinking, and spiritual-but-not-religious Canadians the representation they deserve to influence public policy and decision making in the coming decade. The census is relied upon far more than surveys released by commercial entities.
Please ensure your voice will continue to be heard in the years to come.
Comments on “Select “No Religion” When You Complete Your 2021 Canadian Census”
The question of religion is made difficult to answer by having the author of the question suppose that everyone has a position on the issue. If the question were “What is your favorite recipe for rats?” the options would be limited to “1: Name of a specific recipe” and ” 2: I have no recipes or rat”. The third option (3: I’ve never thought about this issue, my time is too valuable to waste on such things) is not provided. It should be the same for the question on religion (1: Name of religion, 2: No religion. 3: Not a question I’d ever develop an answer to). By answering No Religion the respondent affirms the questioners view that the question is important and considers the question is meaningful enough to formulate a position. Trying another issue: Is a horseshoe ot the hand of Fatima a more potent god luck charm? ( ) Horseshoe, ( ) Fatima, ( ) Huh? . On the census form you are given an options box – use it to state “No Position”
I have an odd request, can I have a copy of what I put down in this year’s census?. if so can it be sent to me by email??
This is alarming and disturbing. Since Israel became a nation after 2000 years of non-existence in 1948 (a miracle that rivals the Exodus) there has been an explosion of bible prophecy. A cursory bible reading shows more in the last 100 years…One would have to be an idiot or just completely blind to miss the fact that we are in the last days. If the apostles thought they were in the last days how much closer are we? The increasing hostility towards Christianity is alarming (along with the globalization, increasing sexual immorality…)How long will the church as we know it operate before we are underground and persecuted? That is, until He raptures His church. Maranatha!
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