Recent Immigrants in Metropolitan Areas: Saskatoon—A Comparative Profile Based on the 2001 Census

Part C: Families and Households

Family and household affiliation of individuals

Older recent immigrants more likely to be living with relatives

Very few recent immigrants live alone. Like the Canadian-born population, a large majority of recent immigrants live in households with at least two people, and in most cases, these are people with whom they are related by blood, marriage, or adoption. In fact, recent immigrants are more likely than the Canadian-born population to live with relatives. This difference is seen in all age groups, but is most notable among the older age groups. Among Saskatoon’s Canadian-born population 45 years of age and over, 20% live alone. In comparison, less than 5% of very recent immigrants 45 years of age and over live alone. In part, these figures probably reflect a difference in the average age of recent immigrants and the Canadian-born in this age group.

Table C-1: Immigrants by period of immigration and Canadian-born—living arrangements, by age, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Canadian-born Immigrants Immigrated before 1986 Immigrated 1986-1995 Immigrated 1996-2001
All ages (including 0-14 years)
Living alone 22,050 2,260 1,840 260 170
Living with non-relatives only 10,330 490 260 120 130
Living with relatives 171,630 14,100 8,180 3,090 2,850
15-24 years
Living alone 1,990 60 10 10 40
Living with non-relatives only 4,730 120 40 40 40
Living with relatives 28,050 1,250 260 630 350
25-44 years
Living alone 7,100 480 190 180 120
Living with non-relatives only 4,210 250 100 60 100
Living with relatives 50,110 4,390 1,780 1,230 1,400
45-64 years
Living alone 5,600 550 520 10 10
Living with non-relatives only 870 80 60 10 0
Living with relatives 34,940 4,910 3,810 780 280
65 years and over
Living alone 7,370 1,170 1,120 50 0
Living with non-relatives only 250 50 50 0 0
Living with relatives 13,330 2,550 2,300 180 90
 
All ages (including 0-14 years)
Living alone 11% 13% 18% 7% 5%
Living with non-relatives only 5% 3% 2% 3% 4%
Living with relatives 84% 84% 80% 89% 90%
15-24 years
Living alone 6% 4% 3% 1% 8%
Living with non-relatives only 14% 8% 13% 6% 8%
Living with relatives 81% 88% 84% 93% 83%
25-44 years
Living alone 12% 9% 9% 12% 7%
Living with non-relatives only 7% 5% 5% 4% 6%
Living with relatives 82% 86% 86% 84% 87%
45-64 years
Living alone 14% 10% 12% 1% 3%
Living with non-relatives only 2% 1% 1% 1% 0%
Living with relatives 84% 89% 87% 98% 97%
65 years and over
Living alone 35% 31% 32% 22% 0%
Living with non-relatives only 1% 1% 1% 0% 0%
Living with relatives 64% 68% 66% 78% 100%

Note: For definitions of living arrangements and related concepts, see the Glossary.

Recent immigrants more likely to live in extended families

Recent immigrants are similar to Canadian-born individuals in that most live in nuclear families, with no relatives other than the immediate members of the nuclear family. However, recent immigrants are a little more likely than the Canadian-born to live in extended family situations. Of the Canadian-born population living with one or more relatives, only 5% are part of an extended family compared to 7% of very recent immigrants living with relatives in an extended family.

Figure C-1: Immigrants by period of immigration and Canadian-born—percentage living with relatives in an extended family, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001
Figure C-1

Note: For definitions of extended and nuclear families, see the Glossary. Whereas Table C-1 includes all persons, Figure C-1 and Table C-2 include only persons who are living with relatives. A small percentage of individuals living with relatives are in “non-family” households. An example might be two adult brothers living together. The percentage of individuals in these situations is not shown in the table and figure in this section.

Extended family living arrangements are most common among older recent immigrants. Almost 30% of the very recent immigrants aged 65 years and over live in extended families, compared to 5% of Canadian-born seniors. Very recent immigrant seniors are more likely than seniors who immigrated during the 1986-1995 period to live in extended families. Older recent immigrants living in extended families are most often related to someone within a nuclear family and are not members of the nuclear family itself.

Table C-2: Immigrants by period of immigration and Canadian-born—living with relatives in nuclear or extended family, by age, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Canadian-born Immigrants Immigrated before 1986 Immigrated 1986-1995 Immigrated 1996-2001
All ages
Nuclear family 158,850 12,690 7,350 2,770 2,590
Extended family 9,020 1,110 650 250 210
Under 15 years
Nuclear family 42,870 950 270 700
Extended family 2,170 50 10 40
15-24 years
Nuclear family 24,270 1,080 230 570 280
Extended family 2,230 90 30 40 30
25-44 years
Nuclear family 46,800 3,950 1,570 1,090 1,290
Extended family 2,140 330 130 100 100
45-64 years
Nuclear family 32,760 4,490 3,510 720 260
Extended family 1,760 400 280 80 30
65 years and over
Nuclear family 12,160 2,230 2,050 130 60
Extended family 730 240 180 40 30
 
All ages
Nuclear family 93% 90% 90% 90% 91%
Extended family 5% 8% 8% 8% 7%
Under 15 years
Nuclear family 95% 95% 96% 93%
Extended family 5% 5% 4% 5%
15-24 years
Nuclear family 87% 87% 88% 91% 79%
Extended family 8% 7% 12% 6% 7%
25-44 years
Nuclear family 93% 90% 88% 89% 92%
Extended family 4% 7% 7% 8% 7%
45-64 years
Nuclear family 94% 91% 92% 89% 91%
Extended family 5% 8% 7% 9% 9%
65 years and over
Nuclear family 91% 87% 89% 74% 71%
Extended family 5% 9% 8% 20% 29%

Note: For definitions of extended and nuclear families, see the Glossary. Whereas Table C-1 includes all persons, Figure C-1 and Table C-2 include only persons who are living with relatives. A small percentage of individuals living with relatives are in “non-family” households. An example might be two adult brothers living together. The percentage of individuals in these situations is not shown in the table and figure in this Part. Consequently, the percentages in Table C-2 do not add to 100%.

Families

One in twenty-four families in Saskatoon is a recent immigrant family

In Saskatoon in 2001, there were 6,600 recent immigrants who landed in Canada between 1986 and 2001. A large majority of these immigrants—5,700 or 86%—were members of a nuclear family. In other words, they were husbands, wives, common-law partners, lone parents, or children. One in twenty-four families in Saskatoon is a recent immigrant family—that is, a family in which either or both spouses or the lone parent are recent immigrants. In Canada as a whole, one in nine families is a recent immigrant family.

Most of the recent immigrant families consist of married or common-law couples, while only 8% are lone-parent families. Among Canadian-born families, 18% are lone-parent families and 82% comprise a married or common-law couple. When families are grouped by the age of the oldest member, lone-parent families are more common among the Canadian-born for all age groups except seniors aged 65 years and over. Lone-parent families of seniors are more common among recent immigrant families than Canadian-born families.

Table C-3: Recent immigrant and Canadian-born families—family structure, by age of older spouse or lone parent, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Canadian-born families Recent immigrant families
All families (including 15-24 years)
Couples with or without children 42,030 82% 2,250 93%
Lone-parent families 8,990 18% 190 8%
Total number of families 51,020 100% 2,430 100%
25-44 years
Couples with or without children 18,060 78% 1,340 93%
Lone-parent families 5,050 22% 100 7%
Total number of families 23,100 100% 1,440 100%
45-64 years
Couples with or without children 15,980 87% 710 90%
Lone-parent families 2,440 13% 80 10%
Total number of families 18,420 100% 790 100%
65 years and over
Couples with or without children 6,620 92% 170 85%
Lone-parent families 570 8% 30 15%
Total number of families 7,180 100% 200 100%

Note: For definitions of family and related concepts, see the Glossary. Since the 1996 Census there have been changes to the definition of family.

Recent immigrant families more likely to have children in the home

Recent immigrant and Canadian-born families differ in the proportion of families with children at home. Three-quarters of recent immigrant families have at least one child of any age living at home. In comparison, almost two-thirds of Canadian-born families have children at home.

This difference occurs mainly among older families, when age of family is defined as the age of the older spouse or lone parent. In families where the older spouse or lone parent is 25 to 44 years of age, recent immigrant families in Saskatoon are slightly less likely than Canadian-born families to have children at home—76% compared to 81%, respectively. However, in families where the older spouse or lone parent is 45 to 64 years of age, 82% of recent immigrant families and 62% of Canadian-born families have children in the home. In families where the older spouse or lone parent is 65 years of age or over, 38% of recent immigrant families have children in the home, compared to just 15% of Canadian-born families.

Figure C-2: Recent immigrant and Canadian-born families—never-married children living at home, by age of older spouse or lone parent, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (percentage)
Figure C-2

The higher proportion of older recent immigrant families with children living at home could be due to a greater likelihood that older children stay longer in the parental home, as well as possible differences in the timing of childbirth and level of fertility. Some of the children in older immigrant families may be adults living with and possibly supporting one or two aging parents.

Older recent immigrant families have more children living at home

Recent immigrant families with children are as likely to have more than two children in the home as Canadian-born families with children. The shares of families with three or more children are also very similar. In families with children where the older spouse or lone parent is 25 to 44 years of age, two or more children are more common among Canadian-born families than among recent immigrant families. However, among families where the older spouse or lone parent is 45 years of age and over, recent immigrant families tend to have a larger number of children.

Table C-4: Recent immigrant and Canadian-born families—never-married children living at home, by age of older spouse or lone parent, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Canadian-born families Recent immigrant families
All ages (including 15-24 years)
One child 12,620 39% 720 40%
Two children 12,800 39% 730 40%
Three or more children 7,160 22% 360 20%
25-44 years
One child 5,520 30% 430 39%
Two children 8,210 44% 440 40%
Three or more children 4,910 26% 240 21%
45-64 years
One child 5,160 45% 240 38%
Two children 4,200 37% 280 44%
Three or more children 2,130 19% 120 19%
65 years and over
One child 1,000 91% 50 60%
Two children 80 7% 20 27%
Three or more children 20 2% 10 13%

In majority of recent immigrant families, both spouses are recent immigrants

The majority of the 2,400 recent immigrant families consist of a recent immigrant husband married to or living common-law with a recent immigrant wife, with or without children. An additional 11% of families have a recent immigrant spouse and a spouse who immigrated earlier, before 1986. Slightly more than one-quarter of recent immigrant families in Saskatoon consist of a recent immigrant paired with a Canadian-born spouse. In Canada as a whole, 15% of recent immigrant families consist of a recent immigrant with a Canadian-born spouse.

Figure C-3: Recent immigrant families—family structure showing immigrant status of spouses, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (percentage distribution)
Figure C-3

Of the families of immigrants who landed before 1986, 55% consist of an immigrant paired with a Canadian-born spouse (not shown in Figure C-3). This proportion is roughly twice that of recent immigrant families and well above the Canadian average.

When recent immigrants enter into conjugal unions, they are very likely to do so as a legally married couple. In Saskatoon, just 4% of recent immigrant couples live common-law, compared to 12% of Canadian-born couples. The difference is found among couples in the 25-44 age range as well as at other ages.

Table C-5: Recent immigrant and Canadian-born families—couples in common-law relationships by age of older spouse, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Canadian-born families Recent immigrant families
All ages 5,120 12% 50 4%
25-44 years 2,830 16% 40 5%
All other ages 2,300 10% 10 2%

The low incidence of common-law relationships is in part a result of immigration law, which, prior to the introduction of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) in June 2002, did not recognize common-law relationships.

Households

One in twenty-five households is a recent immigrant household

In 2001, there were 3,200 recent immigrant households—households in which at least one member 15 years of age or older was a recent immigrant. These made up 4% of the total number of households in Saskatoon.

One-half of recent immigrant households, or 1,600 in total, have at least one member who immigrated after 1995. For one-half of these households, all members are very recent immigrants. The remaining 800 households are comprised of very recent immigrants living together with other persons. In one-third of these households, the other persons are immigrants who landed before 1996, in 58% they are persons born in Canada, and in 8% they are both persons born in Canada and immigrants who landed before 1996. In Canada as a whole, very recent immigrants tend to live more with other immigrants and less with persons born in Canada.

Table C-6: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Number of
households
Share of
all households
Canadian-born 77,950 88%
Earlier immigrants 7,400 8%
Recent immigrants 3,150 4%
 1986-1995 immigrants 1,620 2%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 770 1%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 770 1%
All households 88,950 100%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary.

Nearly nine out of ten households in Saskatoon are comprised only of Canadian-born persons. Households that include one or more earlier immigrants but no recent immigrants account for 8% of households.

Recent immigrant households more likely to be larger than a nuclear family

A recent immigrant household is much more likely than a Canadian-born household to consist of one or more families. Four out of five recent immigrant households are family households, compared to two out of three Canadian-born households.

One in three Canadian-born households is a non-family household, and most of these consist of a person living alone. Among more recent immigrant households, persons living alone are much rarer. Most households consist of a nuclear family—that is, a couple with or without children or a lone parent with one or more children. Immigrant households, except for households of very recent immigrants with others, are somewhat more likely to consist of just a nuclear family than Canadian-born households.

A significant proportion of recent immigrant households consist of a nuclear family living with other persons. In most of these “expanded-family” households, the non-family person or persons are related to the family. Expanded-family households occur much less frequently among the Canadian-born.

Table C-7: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—household structure, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
    Family households Non-family households
Households All family house-
holds
Nuclear families Expanded families Multiple families Single person Multiple persons
Canadian-born 50,560 47,000 3,270 300 22,040 5,350
Earlier immigrants 5,310 4,880 370 60 1,840 270
Recent immigrants 2,500 2,130 250 130 420 230
 1986-1995 immigrants 1,240 1,110 90 50 250 130
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 710 500 150 60 0 80
 1996-2001 immigrants only 580 540 30 10 180 20
All households 58,590 54,170 3,940 480 24,440 5,910
 
Canadian-born 65% 60% 4% 0% 28% 7%
Earlier immigrants 72% 66% 5% 1% 25% 4%
Recent immigrants 79% 68% 8% 4% 13% 7%
 1986-1995 immigrants 77% 69% 5% 3% 15% 8%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 93% 65% 20% 8% 0% 10%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 75% 70% 4% 1% 23% 3%
All households 66% 61% 4% 1% 27% 7%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary.

Households of recent immigrants are also much more likely than Canadian-born households to consist of two or more families. These families may be related to each other, as for example a married couple living with the family of one of their children. Multiple family households are most common among households combining very recent immigrants with other Canadians. Many recent immigrants clearly live in households that are different from the standard nuclear family.

Recent immigrant households tend to be large

Recent immigrant households are more likely to be large in size than Canadian-born and earlier immigrant households. Six out of ten recent immigrant households have one to three persons in the household, compared to three-quarters of Canadian-born households. The proportion of households with four or more members is significantly larger among recent immigrant households than among Canadian-born households.

Table C-8: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—household size, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Number of persons in household Total
Households 1 to 3 4 or 5 6 or more
Canadian-born 59,220 16,770 1,970 77,950
Earlier immigrants 5,610 1,630 170 7,400
Recent immigrants 1,870 1,010 270 3,150
1986-1995 immigrants 940 550 150 1,630
1996-2001 immigrants with others 430 270 60 760
1996-2001 immigrants only 500 200 60 760
All households 67,070 19,480 2,400 88,950
  Number of persons in household Estimated
average size
Households 1 to 3 4 or 5 6 or more
Canadian-born 76% 22% 3% 2.5
Earlier immigrants 76% 22% 2% 2.6
Recent immigrants 59% 32% 8% 3.3
1986-1995 immigrants 57% 33% 9% 3.3
1996-2001 immigrants with others 57% 36% 8% 3.5
1996-2001 immigrants only 66% 26% 8% 3.1
All households 75% 22% 3% 2.6

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary. Average size of household is estimated assuming an average of 4.5 for households with four or five members and an average of 7 for households with six or more members. For households with one, two or three members, the actual size of household was used in the calculation.

Most of the larger recent immigrant households have four or five members. The proportion of recent immigrant households having six or more members is 8%. The share of equally large households among Canadian-born households is only 3%.

More care of children

The proportion of recent immigrants 15 years of age or over reporting time spent on unpaid care of children is higher than the proportion of Canadian-born persons in the same category. On the other hand, a smaller share of recent immigrants report spending time on a regular basis looking after elderly persons in comparison to the Canadian-born.

These numbers reflect differences in family and household structure. Families with children are more numerous among recent immigrants.

Table C-9: Immigrants by period of immigration and Canadian-born—15 years of age and over—reporting unpaid care of children or elders, by gender, Saskatoon Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage)
  Care of
  Children Elders
Women
Canadian-born 36,490 35% 18,790 18%
Immigrants 3,360 40% 1,480 17%
 Immigrated before 1986 1,860 36% 1,120 22%
 Immigrated 1986-1995 930 49% 230 12%
 Immigrated 1996-2001 580 39% 130 9%
Men
Canadian-born 27,750 28% 12,350 12%
Immigrants 2,800 33% 1,010 12%
 Immigrated before 1986 1,560 30% 690 13%
 Immigrated 1986-1995 690 44% 200 13%
 Immigrated 1996-2001 550 33% 120 7%
Total
Canadian-born 64,230 31% 31,140 15%
Immigrants 6,160 36% 2,490 15%
 Immigrated before 1986 3,420 33% 1,810 18%
 Immigrated 1986-1995 1,610 46% 430 12%
 Immigrated 1996-2001 1,130 36% 250 8%
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