Statistics and Facts About Family Violence

Royal LePage REALTORS® help their clients achieve the dream of home ownership, but they know that a house is not truly a home unless it’s safe. Sadly, violence and abuse affects thousands of Canadian families, which is why the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation exists.

  • 51% of Canadian women over the age of 16 have experienced at least one incident of sexual or physical violence.[1]
  • 67% of Canadians say they personally know at least one woman who has been physically or sexually assaulted.[2]
  • On average, every six days in Canada a woman is murdered by her intimate partner.[3]
  • On any given day in Canada, more than 3,300 women (along with their 3,000 children) are forced to sleep in an emergency shelter to escape domestic violence. Every night, about 200 women are turned away because the shelters are full.[4]
  • Each year, over 40,000 arrests result from domestic violence—that’s about 12% of all violent crime in Canada.[5] Since only 22% of all incidents are reported to police, the real number is much higher.
  • According to the Department of Justice, each year Canadians collectively spend $7.4 billion to deal with the aftermath of spousal violence. This figure includes immediate costs such as emergency room visits and future costs such as loss of income. It also includes tangible costs such as funerals, and intangible costs such as pain and suffering.[6]
  • According to police, men (49%) and women (51%) in Canada are equally at risk of violent victimization. However, men are much more likely to be assaulted by a stranger or someone from outside their family, while women are much more likely to be assaulted by someone they know.[7]
  • Some people wonder why a woman stays in an abusive relationship. Women often stay because the abuser has threatened to kill them if they leave, or to kill himself, or to kill their children.[8]
  • Although adults may think “the kids don’t know,” research shows that children see or hear many domestic violence assaults.[9]
  • Each year in Canada, an estimated 362,000 children witness or experience family violence. [10]

This information is courtesy of the Canadian Women’s Foundation (www.canadianwomen.org). Please note the original sources below.

[1] The Violence Against Women Survey, Statistics Canada, 1993. Although more up-to-date data would be preferable, no future Statistics Canada survey asked women about their life-time experience of violence. Available: http://www23.statcan.gc.ca/imdb/p2SV.pl?Function=getSurvey&SDDS=3896&Item_Id=1712

[2]Angus Reid Omnibus Survey, Canadian Women’s Foundation, 2012.

[3] “Homicide in Canada, 2011,” Statistics Canada, p. 11. Available: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-002-x/2012001/article/11738-eng.pdf

[4] “Shelters for Abuse Women in Canada, 2010,” Juristat, Marta Burczycka and Adam Cotter, Statistics Canada, June 27, 2011. Based on shelter admission for a randomly selected day, April 15, 2010.  Available: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-002-x/2011001/article/11495-eng.htm.

[5] Family Violence in Canada: A Statistical Profile 2009, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, p. 5. Available: http://www.uregina.ca/resolve/PDFs/Family%20Violence%20in%20Canada%20A%20Statistical%20Profile%20%202009.pdf

[6] An Estimation of the Economic Impact of Spousal Violence in Canada, 2009. Available: http://justice.gc.ca/eng/rp-pr/cj-jp/fv-vf/rr12_7/index.html

[7] Gender Differences in Police-Reported Violent Crime in Canada 2008, Roxan Vaillancourt, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, p. 5. Available: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85f0033m/85f0033m2010024-eng.pdf

[8] Getting Out and Staying Out: Issues Surrounding a Woman’s Ability to Remain Out of an Abusive Relationship, Kimberly E. Horrill and Helene Berman, Centre for Research on Violence Against Women and Children, The University of Western Ontario, 2004. Available: http://www.learningtoendabuse.ca/sites/default/files/Final-GettingOutandStayingOutIssuesSurroundingaWomansAbilitytoRemainOutofanAbusiveRelati_000.pdf

[9] Measuring Violence Against Women: Statistical Trends 2013, p. 86. Available: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-002-x/2013001/article/11766-eng.pdf

[10] Behind Closed Doors: The Impact of Domestic Violence on Children, Joint report by UNICEF, The Body Shop International, and the Secretariat for the United Nations Secretary-General’s Study on Violence Against Children, 2006, p. Available: http://www.unicef.org/protection/files/BehindClosedDoors.pdf