The number of hate crimes against Muslims jumped by 61% in 2015 compared to the previous year, according to Statistics Canada. A report released recently shows there were 159 anti-Muslim incidents reported to police that year, compared with 99 the year before.
In comparison, there were almost 1.9 million criminal incidents reported by police in 2015. On a national level, the police-reported criminal incidents motivated by hate represent a rate of 3.8 incidents per 100,000 population, marking a 4% increase from 2014 (3.7 per 100,000 population).
Much of the increase in police-reported crimes motivated by hatred of a race or ethnicity is due to 23 more incidents against Arabs or West Asians.
The increase in police-reported hate crimes motivated by hatred of a religion was driven by 60 more incidents (+61%) against Muslims and 20 more against Catholics (+57%). In contrast, the number of hate-motivated crimes targeting the Jewish population declined 16% from 213 to 178.
Nearly half of police-reported hate crimes (48% or 641 incidents) were motivated by hatred toward a race or ethnicity such as Black, Asian, Arab or Aboriginal populations.
Incidents motivated by hatred towards religious groups including Jewish, Muslim, Catholic and other religious populations accounted for 35% or 469 incidents.
In Ontario, where close to half of the total number of hate crimes in Canada were recorded (46%), the number of police-reported hate crimes declined by 5% from 2014. The decrease in Ontario was primarily due to fewer police-reported hate crimes motivated by hatred against the Jewish religion (-30 incidents) and against Black populations (-19 incidents).
From 2014 to 2015, police-reported crime motivated by hatred against the Muslim population increased in all provinces except Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Saskatchewan where the total number remained the same and Manitoba where it went from one incident in 2014 to zero incidents in 2015.