Black and Arab residents on the increase in Ottawa



Ottawa-Gatineau’s Black and Arab populations third behind Toronto and Montreal. Ottawa is also the sixth-fastest growing municipality in the country. Brampton is the fastest growing municipality in Canada.

Ottawa-Gatineau still has the third largest Black and Arab populations in the country, according to 2021 census data released by Statistics Canada last Wednesday.

There are 114,230 people who identified themselves as Black in the survey, which makes up 7.8 per cent of Ottawa-Gatineau’s total population, and 69,210 people identifying themselves as Arab — 4.7 per cent of its total.

In both cases, Ottawa-Gatineau is behind only Montreal and Toronto — Toronto has the most people identifying as Black, while Montreal has the most people who identify as Arab.

Ottawa-Gatineau was third in both categories in 2016.

There is a wider trend of recent immigrants settling outside the country’s three largest metropolitan areas.

Toronto (29.5 per cent), Montreal (12.2 per cent) and Vancouver (11.7 per cent) continued to welcome the most recent immigrants in 2021, but the share of recent immigrants who have settled in Canada’s three largest urban centres continued to decline.

This can be seen in the jumps in growth with recent immigrants who settled in Ottawa-Gatineau: from 3.1 per cent in 2016 to 4.4 per cent in 2021. The number almost doubled in Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo from 1.2 per cent in 2016 to 2.1 per cent in 2021.

Ottawa is the sixth-fastest growing municipality in the country since 2016, with 9.7 per cent population growth over that time.

Brampton is the fastest growing municipality in Canada, with its population increasing by 10.6 per cent since 2016. Longeueil, Que., rounds out the top 10 with a growth rate of 6.1 per cent.

Edmonton and Ottawa surpassed the one million mark between the 2016 and the 2021 censuses.