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Hamilton’s property crime rates continued a decade-long decline while violent crime rates showed a slight increase after a long decline. The number of domestic violence occurrences reported to police has increased, as has the number of police reported hate crimes. Child welfare cases have dropped slightly, while road and pedestrian safety stayed the same.

Property Crime Rate

Last year, property crimes rates fell by 5.0% in the Hamilton CMA to 3,417 per 100,000 people. The provincial decline was 6.4%; national decline was 7.4%. Since 1998, Hamilton’s property crime rate has declined 31.1%. The rate is lower than the national average, but higher than the provincial average.[1]

Graph_safety1

Violent Crime Rate

Violent crime rates increased by 3.3% from last year to 1,129 violent crimes per 100,000 people in the Hamilton CMA. Provincial and national violent crime rates decreased over this time by over 2.0%. In spite of Hamilton’s 2010 increase, the violent crime rate has decreased by 18% since 1998. Similar to the property crime rate, Hamilton’s violent crime rate is lower than the national average, but higher than Ontario’s average.[2]

Graph_safety2

Police Reported Domestic Violence

The number of domestic violence occurrences reported to police increased by more than 70% in 2010 to 3,798 from 2,189 in 2007. The number of charges laid increased by 24% to 973 from 782 for the same years.[3]

Police Reported Hate Crimes

In 2010, there were 34 police-reported hate/biased motivated crimes in Hamilton, an increase of 48% from 2009 when there were 23, and similar to the levels of 2007 and 2008, when 31 and 33 hate crimes were reported.[4]

National statistics indicate that 54% of all hate crimes are based on race or ethnicity – crimes against African-Canadians are most common. Hate crimes based on religion account for 29%; anti- Semitic crimes are by far the most common. Hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation have doubled in the last several years, and account for 13% of hate crimes. Hate crimes typically involve males, particularly as accused persons. In 2009, 92% of those accused and 73% of victims of hate crimes were male.[5]

Child Welfare Caseloads

For both the Hamilton Children’s Aid Society and the Hamilton Catholic Children’s Aid Society, the number of children in care has decreased over the last four years. For the Children’s Aid Society in 2010-11, 634 children and youth in care were served, down from 677 four years ago. For the Catholic Children’s Aid Society in 2010-11, 466 children and youth in care received services, down from 512 four years ago. For both agencies, the number of families receiving services rose by approximately 2% over this same time: in 2010-2011, the CAS served 1,232 families and the CCAS served 719 families.[6]

Road and Pedestrian Safety

In 2009, there were 3,335 motor vehicle collisions in Hamilton, similar to the total in both 2007 and 2008. There were 2,345 people injured in these collisions in 2009, compared to 2,347 and 2,457 in 2008 and 2007 respectively. The number of fatalities was 16 in 2009, up from 14 in 2008, but down from 2007 when there were 27.[7]

The number of collisions causing injury to pedestrians has dropped steadily over the past 20 years to 207 in 2009 from 403 in 1989. The number of pedestrians fatally injured was 2 in 2009 – the lowest in 20 years.

The number of collisions involving cyclists dropped to 119 in 2009 after remaining steady over the past 20 years, at an annual average of 155 collisions resulting in injuries. In 2009 there were 2 cyclist fatalities. Since 1989, there have been a total of 32 cyclist fatalities.[8]


[1] Statistics Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics.
Uniform Crime Reporting Survey. Cansim Table 252-0051.
Data provided by the Community Foundations of Canada.
[2] Statistics Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics.
Uniform Crime Reporting Survey. Cansim Table 252-0051.
Data provided by the Community Foundations of Canada.
[3] Special request: Hamilton Police Services.
[4] Hamilton Police Services.
2010 Annual Hate/Bias Crime Statistical Report.
[5] Statistics Canada, 2009. Police reported hate crime in Canada.
[6] Children’s Aid Society, Annual Reports 2007-2011.
And Catholic Children’s Aid Society, Annual Reports 2007-2011.
[7] City of Hamilton, Public Works Department.
2009 Traffic Safety Update – Volume 1.
[8] City of Hamilton, Public Works Department. 
2009 Traffic Safety Update – Volume 1
.