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Canada’s diversity is its strength

Canada celebrated its 147th birthday last month and, as Canadians count down to 150th birthday celebrations in 2017, a new poll commissioned by Historica Canada reveals Canadian attitudes. 

The poll aimed to measure knowledge and attitudes related to Canadians and how they perceived themselves. The findings show, among other qualities, that we embrace the fact that we are sexy (75 per cent), cool (89 per cent), polite (92 per cent) and proud of our heritage (89 per cent) – a 10 per cent increase over the last Canada Day poll with similar questions in 2010.

“Canadians are feeling good about themselves with good reason,” said Anthony Wilson-Smith, President of Historica Canada. “We increasingly measure our identity in terms of who we are rather than how we measure up against others. That’s a very positive step forward.”

Notably, the online survey of over 1,000 respondents showed immense support for Canada’s 150th anniversary. Most Canadians (71 per cent) plan to attend a Canada 150 activity or commemoration three years from now.

“Heading into Canada’s birthday, the results of the survey show that there might not be a better time to be a Canadian,” said John Wright, senior vice president of Ipsos Reid. 
“Canadians from across the country greatly believe our nation allows us the freedom to express who we want to be, while welcoming others with open arms, which is a heritage we are all proud of. Pride for living in Canada is always growing, perhaps because Canadians believe we are so polite, cool and sexy!”

Other findings include:
  •  One in ten (11 per cent) incorrectly believe the first lines of Canada’s national anthem, O Canada!, begin with something other than “O Canada, our home and native land...”
  • Just over half (56 per cent) can correctly say that Canada’s 150th birthday occurs in 2017.
  • Four in five (81 per cent) Canadians agree (34 per cent strongly, 47 per cent somewhat) that “Canadians should express more patriotism,” while one in five (19 per cent) disagree.
  • Canadians are free to express who they are in Canada (93 per cent agree).
  • Canada’s diversity is a strength (86 per cent agree).
  • Canada is welcoming towards minority cultural groups (93 per cent agree).

Historica Canada is the largest charitable organization dedicated to Canadian history, identity and citizenship. Its mandate is to build active and informed citizens through a greater knowledge and appreciation of the history, heritage and stories of Canada.

Posted: Jul 29, 2014

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