Canadian Ethnic Groups

By: Sharon White
Even before Canada grew to include the colorful and distinctive population it does, it was unusual in the fact that it is an officially bilingual nation. The French colonists were the first to carry the name ‘Canadians;. Today Montreal is the second largest French speaking city in the world after Paris. There are large concentrations of French speaking Canadians throughout the entire country. Acadian residents in the bilingual province of New Brunswick speak the French language of the first Atlantic Canada settlers.

Canada is also proud of its multiculturalism. After all the Native cultures are the only truly indigenous cultures of Canada.

However, less that one million people identify themselves exclusively as members of the North American Indian, Inuit or Metis Aboriginal groups. Ontario has the highest concentration of Aboriginal people, nut the Northwest Territories has the highest proportion with 60 percent of its population being of Aboriginal descent. All other Canadians immigrated from elsewhere whether it was hundreds of years ago or just recently.

Much of the Canadian population is made up of British descendants. Almost four million Canadians are Scottish or Irish ancestry. Other major groups are German, Italian, Ukrainian, Dutch, Greek, Polish, Portuguese, Scandinavian – literally every nationality imaginable. More recently Asians, especially Chinese immigrating from Hong Kong, Latin Americans and people from the Caribbean have been immigrating in larger numbers. Canada also receives refugees from all over the world. Most newcomers head to the larger cities. Toronto, as a resultScience Articles, is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world.

In 1988 the multicultural character of the country was officially recognized when the Government of Canada passed the Multiculturalism Act.

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