Canadian values

Canadian values are the commonly shared ethical and human values of Canadians.[1] The major political parties have claimed explicitly that they uphold these values, but use generalities to specify them. Justin Trudeau after taking office as Prime Minister in 2015 tried to define what it means to be Canadian, saying that Canada lacks a core identity but does have shared values:

There is no core identity, no mainstream in Canada....There are shared values — openness, respect, compassion, willingness to work hard, to be there for each other, to search for equality and justice. Those qualities are what make us the first postnational state.[2]

Numerous scholars have tried to identify, measure and compare them with other countries. Baer et al. argue that, "Questions of national character and regional culture have long been of interest to both Canadian and American social scientists. The Canadian literature has focussed largely on historical and structural reasons for regional distinctiveness and the possible role of regionalism in undermining a truly national Canadian character or ethos."[3] However, there are also critics who say that such a task is practically impossible.[4]

International comparisons

When he began his study of Canada in the late 1940s, American sociologist Seymour Martin Lipset assumed Canadian and American values were practically identical. Further work led him to discover and to explore the differences. By 1968 he concluded:

Canadian values fall somewhere between those of Britain and the United States, rather than being almost identical with those of the United States, as I had assumed.[5]

Lipset offered some theories of where the two societies differ, and why. That stimulated a large body of scholarship, with other scholars offering their own explanations and criticizing his.[6] As a result, numerous academic studies compare Canadian values and beliefs with those of the United States, and sometimes they add in other countries as well. Lipset has explained his social science methodology:

my conclusions [are] that the variations in North American history and social and geographic environments gave rise to two peoples who differ in significant ways from each other, although as I have repeatedly stressed, they are more similar than different, particularly in comparison with other nations. My chief methodological argument for focusing on Canada in order to learn about the United States is precisely that the two nations have so much in common. Focusing on small differences between countries which are alike can be more fruitful for understanding cultural effects than on large ones among highly similar nations. The former permits holding constant many variables, which the units have in common.[7]

Lipset presented numerous political and economic values on which he scored the U.S. as high and Canada as low. These included: individualism and competitiveness, entrepreneurship and high risk-taking, utopian moralism, inclination to political crusades, populist or anti-establishment and anti-elite tendencies, a God-and-country nationalism, and intolerance for ideological nonconformity.[8]

Historical origins: Revolution and counterrevolution

Lipset argues that:

Many writers seeking to account for value differences between the United States and Canada suggest that they stem in large part from the revolutionary origins of the United States and the counterrevolutionary history of Canada…. The Loyalist emigrés from the American Revolution and Canada's subsequent repeatedly aroused fears of United States encroachment fostered the institutionalization of a counterrevolutionary or conservative ethos.[9][10]

Canadian historian Arthur R. M. Lower argues:

in its new wilderness home and its new aspect of British North Americanism, colonial Toryism made its second attempt to erect on American soil a copy of the English social edifice. From one point of view this is the most significant thing about the Loyalist movement; it withdrew a class concept of life from the south, moved it up north, and gave it a second chance.[11]

Religious factors

Religious belief and behavior are possible candidates in searching for the sources of values. Lipset looked to religion as one of the causes of differentiation compared to the United States. He stated:

America remains under the strong influence of the Protestant sects. Its northern neighbor adheres to two churches, Catholic and Anglican, and an ecumenical Protestant denomination (the United Church of Canada) that has moved far from the sectarian origins of its component units toward churchlike communitarian values. The overwhelming majority of Canadians (eighty-seven percent) belong to these three mainline denominations. Conservative evangelicals--groups of Baptists, Nazarenes, Pentecostals, Adventists, and so on--constitute only seven percent of Canadians....Clearly, the different religious traditions of the two countries help to explain much of their varying secular behavior and belief.[12]

Hoover and Reimer agree and update Lipset with a plethora of recent survey statistics, while noting that the differences narrowed since 1990, especially in the Prairie provinces. They stress that in the early 21st century 87% of Canadians belonged to cooperative churches, whereas 20% of Americans were Baptists and many more were evangelicals, fundamentalists or members of new religions who tended to behave in a more sectarian fashion; these elements, they argue, made for a higher level of religious and political conservatism and intolerance in the U.S.[13]


Baer, Grabb and Johnston argue that:

The pattern of regional cultures is not significantly affected or defined by the national border separating Canada and the United States. Instead...with a few exceptions, the map of regional cultures involves three major segments: a relatively left-liberal Quebec, a more conservative Southern United States, and a comparatively moderate sector that largely encompasses the remainder of the two countries.[1]


A 2013 Statistics Canada survey found that an "overwhelming majority" of Canadians shared the values of human rights (with 92% of respondents agreeing that they are a shared Canadian value), respect for the law (92%) and gender equality (91%). There was considerably less agreement among Canadians over whether ethnic and cultural diversity, linguistic duality, and respect for aboriginal culture were also shared Canadian values.[14]

According to the Canadian Index of Well Being at the University of Waterloo, Canadian values include:

  • fairness
  • inclusion
  • democracy
  • economic security
  • safety
  • sustainability
  • diversity
  • equity
  • health[15]

A survey for Citizen's Forum on Canada's Future, 1991 identified the following values: [16]

  • Equality and fairness.
  • Consultation and dialogue.
  • Accommodation and tolerance.
  • Diversity.
  • Patriotism.[17]
  • Freedom, Peace and Nonviolent change.


Michael Ignatieff, the Liberal leader in 2009-11, in 2004 rooted Canadian values in a historic loyalty to the Crown.[18] Likewise the Conservative Party in 2009 pointed to support for the monarchy of Canada as a core Canadian value.[19]

Shaping foreign policy

John Diefenbaker, the Conservative Prime Minister 1957-63, was reluctant to use Canadian values as a criterion for deciding on foreign policies. For example, Jason Zorbas argues that human rights abuses in Argentina and Brazil did not affect relations with those countries.[20]

However his successor, Lester Pearson, the Liberal Prime Minister (1963–68), called in 1967 for a foreign policy "based on Canadian considerations, Canadian values and Canadian interests."[21]

Under Conservative Brian Mulroney, Prime Minister 1984 to 1993, according to scholar Edward Akuffo:

Canadian foreign policy witnessed the integration of development and security issues and the foreign policy agenda when Canada participated in development projects as well as in peacekeeping operations....Mulroney's policy initiatives...[marked] the critical juncture for the revamping of 'Canada's moral identity' after the Cold War....The concept of Canada's moral identity is consistent with what others call the 'branding of Canada' in the international arena through the projection of Canadian values and culture.[22]

Jean Chrétien, the Liberal Prime Minister (1993-2003), showed little interest in foreign policy. Political scientists Patrick James, Nelson Michaud and Marc J. O'Reilly argue that, "This plain-speaking politician built his career on defending traditional Canadian values and promoting middle-class policies."[23]

Egalitarianism, social equality, and peace

While Liberal and Conservative politicians claimed to represent Canadian values, so too did socialists and forces on the left. Ian MacKay argues that, thanks to the long-term political impact of "Rebels, Reds, and Radicals", and allied leftist political elements, "egalitarianism, social equality, and peace... are now often simply referred 'Canadian values.'"[24]


Historic educational ideals in Canada, contrasted to the United States, have been more elitist, with an emphasis on training church and political elites along British lines.[25][26] In 1960, for example, 9.2 percent of Canadians aged 20 to 24 were enrolled in higher education, compared to 30.2 percent in the United States. Even at the secondary level, enrollments were higher in the United States.[27] According to surveys in the late 1950s of citizens and educators by Lawrence Downey:

Canadians, as a group, assigned considerably higher priority than did Americans to knowledge, scholarly attitudes, creative skills, aesthetic appreciation, and morality, as outcomes of schooling. Americans emphasized physical development, citizenship, patriotism, social skills, and family living much more than did Canadians.[28]

The United States has long emphasized vocational, technical and professional education, while the Canadian schools resist their inclusion.[29] Ivor F. Goodson and Ian R. Dowbiggin have explored the battle over vocational education in London, Ontario, in the 1900-1930 era, a time when American cities were rapidly expanding their vocational offerings. The London Technical and Commercial High School came under heavy attack from the city's social and business elite, which saw the school as a threat to the budget of the city's only academic high school, London Collegiate Institute.[30]

Public universities

Most post-secondary institutions in Canada are public universities which means they are funded by the provincial government, but they are not owned by the provinces. In contrast, public universities in the United States are owned and controlled by state governments, and there are many private universities, including such schools as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Chicago and Stanford.[31]

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, heavily promoted by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, was adopted in 1982. The Charter guarantees certain political rights to Canadian citizens and civil rights of everyone in Canada from the policies and actions of all areas and levels of the government. It is designed to unify Canadians around a set of principles that embody those rights. Even before he entered politics, Trudeau had developed his concept of the charter primarily as an expression of common Canadian values.[32] Trudeau said that thanks to the Charter, Canada itself could now be defined:

Canada is a society where all people are equal and where they share some fundamental values based upon freedom. The search for this Canadian identity, as much as my philosophical views, had led me to insist on the charter.[33]


The enormous ethnic variety of the population of Canada in recent decades has led to an emphasis on "multiculturalism." Sociologist N. M. Sussman says, "The tenets of this concept permitted and subtly encouraged the private maintenance of ethnic values while simultaneously insisting on minimal public adherence to Canadian behaviors and to Canadian values." As result, immigrants to Canada are more likely to maintain the values and attitudes of both the home and of the host culture, compared to similar immigrants to Australia, the United Kingdom, or the United States.[34]

Andrew Griffith argues that, "89 percent of Canadians believe that foreign-born Canadians are just as likely to be good citizens as those born in Canada....But Canadians clearly view multiculturalism in an integrative sense, with an expectation that new arrivals will adopt Canadian values and attitudes." Griffith adds that, "There are virtually no differences between Canadian-born and foreign-born with respect to agreement to abide by Canadian values (70 and 68 percent, respectively)."[35]

Gender equality and the role of women

In 2016, the workforce participation rate for Canadian women was 70.2% (78.4% for males).[36]

Some believe that Elsie MacGill defined Canadian values. She was a pioneer for women in engineering and business, a war hero and a role model.[37]

Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.

In contrast, in the United States the Equal Rights Amendment was never ratified. Section 1 of that amendment would have granted "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex."

Citing Canadian values, Canadian courts have rejected assertions that violence against women is in some circumstances acceptable because of one's religious and cultural beliefs. In the R v. Humaid decision, Justice Rutherford of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice stated:

Wife-murder may seem especially repugnant to our Canadian value fabric when cultural considerations that are contrary to our Canadian values figure prominently. However it must be borne in mind here that the Court of Appeal found "no air of reality" to the applicant's claim that religious and cultural beliefs resulted in his being severely provoked by what his wife said to him.[38]

Publicly funded health care

Universal access to publicly funded health services "is often considered by Canadians as a fundamental value that ensures national health care insurance for everyone wherever they live in the country." [39] Survey research in the 1990s showed that:

When asked, "What makes you most proud of Canada?" one in three Canadians volunteered, "Our health-care system." When asked a reversed version of the American health-care scenario, "Would you support political union [with the U.S.] if it meant a private health-care system?" The reply was a resounding 'no'.[40]



The idea of Canadian values has been used for the dedication of memorials, like the Memorial to the Victims of Communism – Canada, a Land of Refuge, in Ottawa. It construction was meant to bring the suffering of "the millions of victims of Communism" into the public's consciousness. Many of these victims fled to Canada "seeking peace, order, democracy, and liberty." [41] The memorial is expected to be completed in 2018.

According to Ms. Mélanie Joly, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, "Commemorative monuments play a key role in reflecting the character, identity, history and values of Canadians".[42] She complained that the previous Harper government had made the project too controversial. Her new Liberal government has moved the site and cut its budget.[43]


Bill 101 - Charter of the French Language

The Charter of the French Language is Quebec legislation that makes French the official language of Quebec.[44] Among other things, the Charter requires:

  • all administrative government documents to be drafted and published in French
  • the language of instruction from kindergarten to secondary school to be French

Quebec Charter of Values

The Quebec Charter of Values is legislation that was proposed in the Quebec legislature in 2013 but which was not enacted into law.[45] It would ban public sector employees from wearing conspicuous religious symbols. Article 5 in Chapter II states:

In the exercise of their functions, personnel members of public bodies must not wear objects such as headgear, clothing, jewelry or other adornments which, by their conspicuous nature, overtly indicate a religious affiliation.[46]

Justin Trudeau has been a champion of the "Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms"; he opposed the "Quebec Charter of Values." He stated: "Prohibiting someone from wearing a hijab or a kippah is not compatible with Quebec and Canadian values."[47]

Distinct society

Proposed changes to the Canadian Constitution included adding the phrase "distinct society" to the Constitution Act, 1867 to recognizes the uniqueness of Quebec as compared with the rest of Canada.[48][49]


Defining Canadian values is problematic if the goal is to identify values that are universally held.

According to Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reporter Neil Macdonald, there are "precious few notions that can accurately be described as universally held Canadian values."[50]

According to journalist Lysiane Gagnon, Canadians "don't share common values." She notes that while many ideas - such as medicare, bilingualism, and multiculturalism - are sometimes characterized as Canadian values, "many Canadians are against all or some of these."[51]

Canadian sociologist Vic Satzewich has argued that "coming up with a universal set of our nation's values would be impossible."[52]

The Institute for Canadian Values sponsored advertisements against the teaching of certain sexual education topics in the Ontario school curriculum and discriminated against transsexual, transgender, and intersex persons. The advertisements were controversial and quickly discontinued.[53]

Barbaric cultural practices issue

Certain cultural practices were called "Barbaric" and made illegal in 2015, when the Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act was enacted by the Canadian federal government.[54][55][56]

In the 2015 general election Conservatives pitched their policy "as an issue of Canadian values....The Conservatives expanded the issue, announcing a proposed RCMP hotline that would allow Canadians to report the existence of 'barbaric cultural practices' in the country." These targeted practices included polygamy, forced marriage and early marriage (i.e. child marriage).[57]

The 2015 act criminalizes certain conduct related to early and forced marriage ceremonies, including the act of removing a child from Canada for the purpose of such marriages.[58]

Nationalism and its potential adverse impact on foreign policy

Scholars have asked whether shared values underpin national identity.[59] Denis Stairs links the concept of Canadian values with nationalism. Stairs, the McCulloch Professor in Political Science at Dalhousie University, has argued that there is indeed an intense widespread belief in the existence of Canadian values, but says that belief can itself be harmful. He contends that:

[Canadians typically] think of themselves not as others are, but as morally superior. They believe, in particular, that they subscribe to a distinctive set of values - Canadian values - and that those values are special in the sense of being unusually virtuous. A prominent effect of that belief is that it has put them in serious danger of misunderstanding the true origins of their behaviour, on the one hand, and of doing significant damage to the effectiveness of their diplomacy, both next door and overseas, on the other.[60]

Stairs also argues that, "first billing is usually given in received lists of Canadian values to 'multiculturalism' a means of challenging the premises of nationalism in Quebec."[61]

Screening immigrants for anti-Canadian values

Canadian politicians have proposed rejecting immigrants who have anti-Canadian values such as:

  • intolerance toward other religions, cultures, genders, and sexual orientations
  • reluctance to embrace Canadian freedoms[62]

Kellie Leitch, a candidate for leadership candidate for the Conservative Party of Canada, is among the proponents of this type of screening. [62]

In 2016, an Environics public opinion poll found that 54 per cent of Canadians agree that "there are too many immigrants coming into this country who are not adopting Canadian values." [63][64]

See also


  1. ^ a b Douglas Baer, Edward Grabb, and William Johnston, "National character, regional culture, and the values of Canadians and Americans." Canadian Review of Sociology/Revue canadienne de sociologie 30.1 (1993): 13-36.
  2. ^ Quoted in Guy Lawson, "Trudeau's Canada, Again: With support from President Obama and the legacy of his father on his side, Justin Trudeau sets out to redefine what it means to be Canadian," New York Times Dec. 8, 2015
  3. ^ Baer, Grabb, and Johnston, "National character, regional culture, and the values of Canadians and Americans." (1993) p 13.
  4. ^ Neil Macdonald (September 13, 2016). "A very short list of Canadian values: Neil Macdonald". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  5. ^ S. M. Lipset, Agrarian Socialism: The Cooperative Commonwealth Federation in Saskatchewan, a Study in Political Sociology (1950; revised edition 1968) p xv
  6. ^ Doug Baer, et al. "The values of Canadians and Americans: A critical analysis and reassessment." Social Forces 68.3 (1990): 693-713.
  7. ^ Lipset, "Defining Moments and Recurring Myths: A Reply" Canadian Review of Sociology & Anthropology (2001) 38#1 pp 97-100.
  8. ^ Seymour M. Lipset, "The Canadian Identity," International Journal of Canadian Studies (2006), Issue 33, pp 83-98.
  9. ^ S.M. Lipset, Revolution and Counterrevolution: Change and persistence in social structures (2nd ed, 1970) p. 55.
  10. ^ J.M.S. Careless, Canada: A story of challenge (Cambridge UP, 1963), pp 111-13.
  11. ^ A.R.M. Lower, From Colony to Nation (1946), p 114.
  12. ^ Lipset, Continental Divide (1990) PP 88-89.
  13. ^ Dennis R. Hoover and Samuel H. Reimer. "Things That Make for a Peaceable Kingdom: An Overview of Christianity and 'Cooperativeness' across the Continental Divide." Journal of Ecumenical Studies 41.2 (2004): 205.
  14. ^ Canada, Government of Canada, Statistics. "Canadian Identity, 2013".
  15. ^ "Reflecting Canadian values". Canadian Index of Well Being. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  16. ^ Diane Symbaluk; Tami Bereska. Sociology in Action, Canadian Edition, 2nd ed. Nelson Education. pp. 87–88. ISBN 978-0-17-672841-0.
  17. ^ Nicholas Kohler, “Canadians Feel like They’re on Top of the World,”, retrieved October 13, 2017.
  18. ^ D. Michael Jackson (2013). The Crown and Canadian Federalism. Dundurn. pp. 18–19.
  19. ^ Shibao Guo; Lloyd Wong (2015). Revisiting Multiculturalism in Canada: Theories, Policies and Debates. SensePublishers. p. 63.
  20. ^ Jason Gregory Zorbas (2011). Diefenbaker and Latin America: The Pursuit of Canadian Autonomy. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. p. 115.
  21. ^ Robert A. Spencer (1958). Canadian Foreign Policy, Conservative Style. Canadian Institute of International Affairs. p. 14.
  22. ^ Edward Ansah Akuffo (2016). Canadian Foreign Policy in Africa: Regional Approaches to Peace, Security, and Development. Taylor & Francis. p. 41.
  23. ^ Patrick James; et al. (2006). Handbook of Canadian Foreign Policy. Books. p. 514.
  24. ^ Ian McKay (2005). Rebels, Reds, Radicals: Rethinking Canada's Left History. Between The Lines. p. 181.
  25. ^ Seymour Martin Lipset, Revolution and Counterrevolution (2nd ed, 1970) pp 40-44
  26. ^ Craig Crawford and James Curtis. "English Canadian-American differences in value orientations: Survey comparisons bearing on Lipset's thesis." Studies in Comparative International Development 14.3-4 (1979): 23-44.
  27. ^ Richard A. Wanner, "Educational inequality: Trends in twentieth-century Canada and the United States." Comparative Social Research 9.1 (1986): 986+
  28. ^ Lawrence William Downey, The task of public education: The perceptions of people (Midwest Administration Center, University of Chicago, 1960), Quoted in Lipset, Revolution and Counterrevolution, p 42.
  29. ^ Lipset, Revolution and Counterrevolution p 41
  30. ^ Ivor F. Goodson and Ian R. Dowbiggin, "Vocational education and school reform: the case of the London (Canada) Technical School, 1900-1930" History of Education Review (1991) 20#1: 39–60.
  31. ^ Theresa Shanahan; et al. (2016). The Handbook of Canadian Higher Education. MQUP. pp. 49–52.
  32. ^ Gerald Kernerman; Philip Resnick (2005). Insiders and Outsiders: Alan Cairns and the Reshaping of Canadian Citizenship. UBC Press. p. 171.
  33. ^ Pierre Elliott Trudeau (1993). Memoirs. McClelland & Stewart. p. 323.
  34. ^ Chan Kwok-bun (2012). International Handbook of Chinese Families. Springer. p. 59.
  35. ^ Andrew Griffith (2015). Multiculturalism In Canada: Evidence and Anecdote. p. 50.
  36. ^ "27th Actuarial Report on the Canada Pension Plan" (PDF). Government of Canada. p. 18. Retrieved 2 January 2017.
  37. ^ Cristina Amon; Mary Wells; Kim Woodhouse (December 6, 2016). "MacGill defined Canadian values". The Whig. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  38. ^ "Queen v Adi Abdel Humaid". paragraphs 23 and 24: Ontario Superior Court of Justice. August 25, 2015. Retrieved 5 January 2017.
  39. ^ "The Health of Canadians – The Federal Role". 17.1 Universality: Parliament of Canada. Retrieved 5 January 2017.
  40. ^ Ronald F. Inglehart; et al. (1996). The North American Trajectory: Cultural, Economic, and Political Ties Between the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Transaction Publishers. p. 146.
  41. ^ "Memorial to the Victims of Communism". Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  42. ^ "Minister Joly Launches Public Consultations on the Memorial to the Victims of Communism – Canada A Land of Refuge". Government of Canada. Archived from the original on 2016-02-03. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  43. ^ Don Butler, "Victims of communism memorial to be moved, Joly announces," 00 Ottawa Citizen December 17, 2015
  44. ^ Richard Y. Bourhis, ed., Conflict and Language Planning in Quebec (1984).
  45. ^ Charles Tessier and Éric Montigny. "Untangling myths and facts: Who supported the Québec Charter of Values?" French Politics 14.2 (2016): 272-285.
  46. ^ Trygve Ugland, "The Quebec Charter of Values: A Solution in Search of Problems." Journal of Eastern Townships Studies 42 (2014): 11+ online
  47. ^ Huguette Young (2016). Justin Trudeau: The Natural Heir. Dundurn. p. 129.
  48. ^ Michael Burgess, "Ethnicity, nationalism and identity in Canada‐Quebec relations: The case of Quebec's 'distinct society'." Journal of Commonwealth & Comparative Politics 34.2 (1996): 46-64.
  49. ^ Richard Johnston and Andre Blais. "Meech Lake and Mass Politics: The'Distinct Society'Clause." Canadian Public Policy/Analyse de Politiques (1988): S25-S42. online
  50. ^ "A very short list of Canadian values: Neil Macdonald".
  51. ^ Gagnon, Lysiane. "Citizenship Rules for Homebodies." The Globe and Mail, Dec 19, 1998.
  52. ^ "Kellie Leitch misses the point about immigration".
  53. ^ Heather Shipley, "Queering Institutions?: Sexual Identity in Public Education in a Canadian Context." Feminist Teacher 23.3 (2013): 196-210.
  54. ^ "Barbaric Cultural Practices Act". Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  55. ^ Ashley Csanady (June 17, 2015). "'Barbaric Cultural Practices' bill to criminalize forced marriage, tackle 'honour killings' passes final vote". National Post. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  56. ^ "Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act". Government of Canada. Retrieved 1 January 2017.
  57. ^ Jon H. Pammett; Christopher Dornan (2016). The Canadian Federal Election of 2015. Dundurn. p. 220.
  58. ^ "Archived - Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act receives Royal Assent - Canada News Centre". Retrieved 2017-01-01.
  59. ^ Alisa Henderson and Nicola McEwen. "Do shared values underpin national identity? Examining the role of values in national identity in Canada and the United Kingdom." National Identities 7.2 (2005): 173-191.
  60. ^ Denis Stairs, "Myths, Morals, and Reality in Canadian Foreign Policy" International Journal 58#2 (2003) pp. 239-256 in JSTOR
  61. ^ Stairs, "Myths, morals, and reality in Canadian foreign policy," p 247
  62. ^ a b Bruce Campion-Smith (September 10, 2016). "Canadians favour screening would-be immigrants for 'anti-Canadian' values, poll shows". Toronto Star. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  63. ^ "Jedwab: Politicians should show some honesty on 'Canadian values' pitch". Ottawa Citizen. December 11, 2016. Retrieved 31 December 2016.
  64. ^ Angus Reid (October 4, 2016). "Canadians aren't as accepting as we think — and we can't ignore it, writes Angus Reid". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. p. English. Retrieved 31 December 2016.

Further reading

  • Alston, Jon P., Theresa M. Morris, and Arnold Vedlitz. "Comparing Canadian and American values: New evidence from national surveys." American Review of Canadian Studies 26.3 (1996): 301-314.
  • Baer, Doug, et al. "The values of Canadians and Americans: A critical analysis and reassessment." Social Forces 68.3 (1990): 693-713.
  • Baer, Douglas, Edward Grabb, and William Johnston. "National character, regional culture, and the values of Canadians and Americans." Canadian Review of Sociology/Revue canadienne de sociologie 30.1 (1993): 13-36.
  • Baer, Douglas, et al. "Respect for authority in Canada, the United States, Great Britain and Australia." Sociological Focus 28.2 (1995): 177-195.
  • Basil, Debra Z. "Charitable donations as a reflection of national values: An exploratory comparison of Canada and the United States." Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing 18.1 (2007): 1-19.
  • Hoover, Dennis R., and Samuel H. Reimer. "Things That Make for a Peaceable Kingdom: An Overview of Christianity and 'Cooperativeness' across the Continental Divide." Journal of Ecumenical Studies 41.2 (2004): 205+ online
  • Hoover, Dennis R. et al. "Evangelical Protestantism Meets the Continental Divide: Moral and Economic Conservatism in the United States and Canada," Political Research Quarterly 55#3 (June, 2002): 351-374.
  • Lipset, S.M. Continental divide: The values and institutions of the United States and Canada (1991).
  • Katchanovski, Ivan, Neil Nevitte, and Stanley Rothman. "Race, Gender, and Affirmative Action Attitudes in American and Canadian Universities." The Canadian Journal of Higher Education 45.4 (2015): 18.
  • Moon, C. David, Nicholas P. Lovrich Jr, and John C. Pierce. "Political culture in Canada and the United States: comparing social trust, self-esteem, and political liberalism in major Canadian and American Cities." Social science quarterly (2000): 826-836. in jSTOR

External links

Canadian Journey Series

The Canadian Journey series is the sixth series of banknotes of the Canadian dollar designed and circulated by the Bank of Canada. It succeeded the Birds of Canada banknote series. The first of the banknotes issued into circulation was the $10 banknote on 17 January 2001, and the last to be issued was the $50 banknote on 17 November 2004. The series was succeeded by the Frontier Series, banknotes of which were first issued into circulation from 2011 to 2013.

This series introduced new security features, and discontinued the use of planchettes, a security feature common since the earliest Canadian banknote series. All banknotes have tactile features to assist people who have visual impairments to identify the notes.

Designs on the reverse of each banknote in the series were based on themes of fundamental Canadian values and achievements. The $20 banknote was awarded 2004 Banknote of the Year by the International Bank Note Society.

Canadian Tamil Congress

The Canadian Tamil Congress (CTC) is a non-profit organization of Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora in Canada. The CTC has served Canada's Tamil community since October 2000 and has 11 chapters. The objectives of the Canadian Tamil Congress are: to promote the participation of Tamil Canadians in activities of local, regional, provincial and national importance; to uphold the Canadian values of human rights, multiculturalism, religious and cultural diversity, pluralism, and volunteerism; to champion for equal rights and in particular, gender equality; to support the cultural and political aspirations of Tamils. The organization also promotes the study and knowledge of Tamil language, culture and history within the Canadian context. The CTC also works on adjustment/settlement issues.

Canada is home to a large Tamil Canadian community. Thousands of Tamils arrived in Canada during the 1980s and 1990s, particularly as a result of Black July ethnic riots which ravaged Sri Lanka.

Canadian cultural protectionism

Cultural protectionism in Canada has, since the mid-20th century, taken the form of conscious, interventionist attempts on the part of various Governments of Canada to promote Canadian cultural production and limit the effect of foreign culture on the domestic audience. Sharing a large border and a common language with the United States, Canadian politicians have perceived the need to preserve and support a culture separate from US-based North American culture in the globalized media arena. Canada's efforts to maintain its cultural differences from the US and Mexico have been balanced by countermeasures in trade arrangements, including the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).


Canadians (French: Canadiens) are people identified with the country of Canada. This connection may be residential, legal, historical or cultural. For most Canadians, several (or all) of these connections exist and are collectively the source of their being Canadian.

Canada is a multilingual and multicultural society home to people of many different ethnic, religious, and national origins, with the majority of the population made up of Old World immigrants and their descendants. Following the initial period of French and then the much larger British colonization, different waves (or peaks) of immigration and settlement of non-indigenous peoples took place over the course of nearly two centuries and continue today. Elements of Indigenous, French, British, and more recent immigrant customs, languages, and religions have combined to form the culture of Canada, and thus a Canadian identity. Canada has also been strongly influenced by its linguistic, geographic, and economic neighbour—the United States.

Canadian independence from the United Kingdom grew gradually over the course of many years since the formation of the Canadian Confederation in 1867. World War I and World War II in particular, gave rise to a desire among Canadians to have their country recognized as a fully-fledged sovereign state with a distinct citizenship. Legislative independence was established with the passage of the Statute of Westminster 1931, the Canadian Citizenship Act of 1946 took effect on January 1, 1947, and full sovereignty was achieved with the patriation of the constitution in 1982. Canada's nationality law closely mirrored that of the United Kingdom. Legislation since the mid-20th century represents Canadians' commitment to multilateralism and socioeconomic development.

Centre for the Study of Democracy (Queen's University, Ontario)

The Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) is a multidisciplinary policy studies research organization which enhances the study of democracy both within Canada and abroad. Founded in the mid-1990s, CSD is a non-profit, non-partisan organization affiliated with the School of Policy Studies at Queen's University, in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. CSD is chaired by Dr. Thomas Axworthy, Principal Secretary and Chief Speechwriter for Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in the early 1980s.

The CSD operates on the principle that building local knowledge of democratization and good governance is the most effective means of allowing countries undergoing democratic transitions to successfully manage this change over the long term, as well as being able to effectively respond to crises. CSD works extensively with local partners to provide both the pedagogical experience expertise and practical experience necessary to assist in the development of local democratic values programs as well as providing contacts to others who have succeeded in similar efforts.

The CSD focuses on research, mutual learning and executive development programming, designed to increase indigenous capacity to produce, debate and disseminate research about democracy.

The CSD is guided by three principles: to work jointly with individuals or institutions abroad on research projects of mutual interest that contributes to democratic governance, to commit to local partners to establish democratic capacity (a process which often takes years), and to use this experience to teach the lessons learned to other countries.

The CSD was founded by Dr. George Perlin, Professor Emeritus in the School of Policy Studies at Queen's University, who specializes in the study of Ukraine. He initiated one of the most extensive project undertaken by the Centre, which involved the development of a Democratic Values Curriculum in Ukraine, the Canada-Ukraine Democracy Education Project, which is ongoing.

Citizenship judge

A citizenship judge is an official in Canada who assesses referred applications to ensure they meet the physical presence requirements for Canadian citizenship and presides over citizenship ceremonies to administer the Oath of Citizenship for successful applicants. Citizenship judges also speak to community groups, schools, and other audiences about the process to become a citizen, as well as Canadian values and the rights and responsibilities of Canadian citizenship. As independent decision makers, citizenship judges comprise the

Citizenship Commission a body that is arms length from the Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.

Citizenship judges are appointed in accordance with the Citizenship Act by the Governor General-in-Council on the recommendation of Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. Citizenship judges are addressed as Judge [name] rather than Your Honour.

Citizenship Judges are independent decision makers, and unlike Justice of the peace, Citizenship judges are not judicial officers.

Culture of Canada

The culture of Canada embodies the artistic, culinary, literary, humour, musical, political and social elements that are representative of Canada and Canadians. Throughout Canada's history, its culture has been influenced by European culture and traditions, especially British and French, and by its own indigenous cultures. Over time, elements of the cultures of Canada's immigrant populations have become incorporated to form a Canadian cultural mosaic. The population has also been influenced by American culture because of a shared language, proximity, television and migration between the two countries.Canada is often characterized as being "very progressive, diverse, and multicultural". Canada's federal government has often been described as the instigator of multicultural ideology because of its public emphasis on the social importance of immigration. Canada's culture draws from its broad range of constituent nationalities, and policies that promote a just society are constitutionally protected. Canadian Government policies—such as publicly funded health care; higher and more progressive taxation; outlawing capital punishment; strong efforts to eliminate poverty; an emphasis on cultural diversity; strict gun control; the legalization of same-sex marriage, pregnancy terminations, euthanasia and cannabis —are social indicators of the country's political and cultural values. Canadians identify with the country's institutions of health care, military peacekeeping, the National park system and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.The Canadian government has influenced culture with programs, laws and institutions. It has created crown corporations to promote Canadian culture through media, such as the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), and promotes many events which it considers to promote Canadian traditions. It has also tried to protect Canadian culture by setting legal minimums on Canadian content in many media using bodies like the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

Gordon Gilchrist

James Gordon Gilchrist (born 11 August 1928) was a Progressive Conservative party member of the House of Commons of Canada. In the private sector, Gilchrist had held senior positions at Domtar Ltd. including General Manager for Alberta & BC and then, for 25 years, operated a series of Canadian Tire stores, winning the Pacesetter Award, in 1981, for combining above-average sales with exceptional community involvement.

He was a Progressive Conservative Member of Parliament for Ontario's Scarborough East electoral district which he won in the 1979 federal election and again in 1980. He served on the Defence Committee and as the Critic for Science and Technology for the Progressive Conservatives. Gilchrist left national politics in 1984 and did not campaign in that year's federal election after being convicted of income tax evasion. He had served in the 31st and 32nd Canadian Parliaments.

One of Canada's earliest proponents of the move to a hydrogen economy, Gilchrist established a blue-ribbon panel of scientists, academics and industrialists to study the possible applications of hydrogen in 1985. The result of their studies was a report to Prime Minister Brian Mulroney entitled "Hydrogen - A National Mission for Canada", a report which is still considered the definitive analysis of the various ways in which hydrogen can be used in place of carbon-based fuels.

Gilchrist subsequently moved to the Cobourg area. He turned to local politics and has been elected to the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board since 2001 and on which he has held a variety of positions, including Chair of the Program Committee and Chair of the Discipline Committee.

On 7 March 2008, several groups including the Kawartha Muslim Religious Association held a press conference in which they demanded Gilchrist's resignation after a letter of his was published in a local newspaper stating that "most" immigrants don't understand Canadian values and "bring their old-country feuds and hatreds to be paraded and re-fought on Canadian soil." Gilchrist rejected the call for his resignation saying, "Why should I? I'm not a racist. There was nothing racist about my letter."He was re-elected, for a fourth term, in October 2010 on a platform that focused on improved access to technology in the local schools. During that term, he successfully campaigned for the amalgamation of the two high schools in Cobourg, Ontario into one. The new high school, now known as Cobourg Collegiate Institute, is located at the site of the former Cobourg East Collegiate. As a consequence of the amalgamation, the new school received significant upgrades in both facilities and program offerings, making it one of the best equipped high schools in Ontario. Gilchrist was re-elected, for a fifth term, in October 2014 on a platform of bringing similar program upgrades to the other schools in his district.

Gilchrist founded the Cadet Corps in Peterborough, he was a Boy Scout leader for over 25 years and was a Rotarian for over 30 years. He is an ardent environmentalist and, in addition to his ongoing efforts to promote hydrogen technology, he has planted over 10,000 trees on his family farm in Northumberland County.

His son Steve Gilchrist was a Cabinet Minister in Ontario during the Mike Harris government.

Institute for Canadian Values ad controversy

In late 2011, the National Post, one of Toronto’s major daily newspapers, ran a controversial advertisement paid for by the Institute for Canadian Values (ICV). The ad first appeared on Saturday September 24, 2011 and started to build controversy which reached a pinnacle on September 29, 2011. It was supported by the Canada Christian College, which houses ICV, and its President, Evangelical minister Charles McVety.The advertisement spoke out against the teaching of certain sexual education topics in the Ontario school curriculum and discriminated against transsexual, transgender, and intersex persons. The National Post ran an apology for the ad on September 30, 2011 but revised it later on that same day when it alluded to sexuality as a choice, bringing further controversy onto itself. Two days after the Post’s apology, the Toronto Sun, another major newspaper, published an abridged version of the ad.Though the Sun has since ceased running the ad, its refusal to apologize has courted further controversy. This series of events has sparked debates about serious issues concerning freedom of speech and freedom of religion, including the way these are negotiated within the public sphere. These events have also led to discussions about the role of newspapers within a society, especially regarding their duties to the public and the liberties they can reasonably take with their content and agendas.

Joseph Ben-Ami

Joseph C. Ben-Ami is a Canadian conservative writer, strategist and organizer. He is a principal consultant with Ditchley Public Affairs, a Canadian-based strategic communications and political marketing firm, and sits on the board of BlueCommittee.Org. Ben-Ami is the former President and CEO of the Arthur Meighen Institute for Public Affairs (formerly the Canadian Centre for Policy Studies), an independent conservative think-tank, and publisher of Canadian Observer, a quarterly magazine that examines culture, politics and public affairs from a conservative perspective. Before joining the Meighen Institute he was the executive director of the Institute for Canadian Values (ICV), and before that he was director of Government Relations and Diplomatic Affairs for B'nai B'rith Canada. Ben-Ami is also a member of the international advisory board of the organization Jews Against Anti-Christian Defamation, a US-based Jewish group dedicated to fighting discrimination directed against Christians.

Ben-Ami has held senior positions in several local, provincial and national political and advocacy campaigns. He served as a policy aid to former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and operations director for Stockwell Day, former leader of the Canadian Alliance. Most recently he managed the campaign of Brad Trost for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada.

Ben-Ami is also a conservative television and radio commentator and regular public speaker. He is co-host of The Combat Zone Podcast and lectures on subjects such as civic engagement and leadership.

Kellie Leitch

Khristinn Kellie Leitch FRCSC (born July 30, 1970) is a Conservative MP in the House of Commons of Canada and former surgeon. She was first elected in 2011, succeeding Member of Parliament Helena Guergis who was dismissed from the Conservative Party caucus. Following her election, Leitch was appointed as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development. On July 15, 2013, Prime Minister Harper named Leitch Minister of Labour and Minister for the Status of Women. She served in Cabinet until the defeat of the Conservative government in the 2015 federal election. Leitch ran in the 2017 contest for the leadership of the Conservative Party. On January 23, 2018, Leitch announced that she would not be seeking re-election for the 43rd Canadian federal election and would return to being a full-time surgeon.

Liberal-Conservative Party

The Liberal-Conservative Party (French: le Parti libéral-conservateur) was the formal name of the Conservative Party of Canada until 1873, and again from 1922 to 1938, although some Conservative candidates continued to run under the label as late as the 1911 election and others ran as simple Conservatives before 1873. In many of Canada's early elections, there were both "Liberal-Conservative" and "Conservative" candidates; however, these were simply different labels used by candidates of the same party. Both were part of Sir John A. Macdonald's government and official Conservative and Liberal-Conservative candidates would not, generally, run against each other. It was also common for a candidate to run on one label in one election and the other in a subsequent election.The roots of the name are in the coalition of 1853 in which moderate Reformers and Conservatives from Canada West joined with bleus from Canada East under the dual premiership of Sir Allan MacNab and A.-N. Morin. The new ministry committed to secularizing Clergy reserves in Canada West and abolishing seigneurial tenure in Canada East. Over time, the Liberal-Conservatives evolved into the Conservative party and their opponents, the Clear Grits and the Parti rouge evolved into the Liberal Party of Canada. On October 12, 1916, the last Liberal-Conservative cabinet minister, Sam Hughes, was dismissed, making the executive all officially Conservative Party members.

Prominent Liberal-Conservative Members of Parliament and Senators in Canadian history include:

Sir John A. Macdonald

Sir George-Étienne Cartier

Sir Alexander Tilloch Galt

John Carling

Sir John Rose

Thomas D'Arcy McGee

Joseph Howe

Sir Samuel Leonard Tilley

Sir John Joseph Caldwell Abbott

John Henry Pope

Joseph-Aldric Ouimet (Liberal-Conservative MP 1873–1896, ran as Conservative and defeated in 1908)

Sir John Sparrow David Thompson

Sir Samuel Hughes

Sir Hugh John Macdonald

Archibald Woodbury McLelan (Liberal-Conservative Senator, resigned and elected to the House of Commons as a Conservative after 1881)

Joseph Godéric Blanchet (Liberal-Conservative from 1867–1875, Conservative 1875–1878, Liberal-Conservative 1878–1883)

John Costigan (Liberal-Conservative 1867–1900, crossed the floor to join the Liberals in 1901)The party resumed formally referring to itself as Liberal-Conservative from 1922 until 1938 when it officially became the National Conservative Party, however, it was commonly referred to as the Conservative Party throughout this period.

Lindsay Shepherd

Lindsay Shepherd (born 1993 or 1994) is a Canadian columnist and free-speech activist, who became known for her involvement, as a graduate student and teaching assistant, in a free-speech and academic-freedom controversy at Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU) in Waterloo, Ontario in 2017.Shepherd was asked to submit her lesson plans prior to class in November 2017 for having played her communications class two clips from The Agenda with Steve Paikin, a TVOntario current-affairs program, which showed a debate with psychologist Jordan Peterson, on Bill C-16, a proposal to add "gender identity or expression" as a prohibited ground for discrimination to the Canadian Human Rights Act and as an identifiable group to the Criminal Code. The bill became law in June 2017.After the university's LGBTQ support group raised a concern about the class, Shepherd was summoned to a meeting with her supervisor; the head of her academic program; and an acting manager from the university's Diversity and Equity Office. Shepherd recorded the meeting, during which she was asked about the video clips and told that she would have to submit a lesson plan to Professor Rambukkana prior to each class. After she released the recording, an independent fact-finder hired by the university reported that the meeting should not have taken place, that "[n]o formal complaint, nor informal concern relative to a Laurier policy" had been registered, and that Shepherd had done nothing wrong by showing the clips.After the tape's release, Shepherd became active online about issues of free speech and academic freedom. In 2018, she founded the Laurier Society for Open Inquiry at WLU, and in May that year received the 2018 Harry Weldon Canadian Values Award from Canadians for Accountability. The following month she filed a lawsuit against the university, the two professors, the third staff member and a student, alleging "harassment, intentional infliction of nervous shock, negligence, and constructive dismissal". Peterson also filed a lawsuit, for defamation, against the university and the staff members in the meeting.

National Post

The National Post is a Canadian English-language newspaper. The paper is the flagship publication of Postmedia Network, and is published Tuesdays through Saturdays. It was founded in 1998 by Conrad Black. Once distributed nationally, it later began publishing a daily edition in the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia, with only its weekend edition available in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. As of 2006, the Post is no longer distributed in Canada's Atlantic provinces and the territories.

Shafia family murders

The Shafia Family murders took place on June 30, 2009 in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Shafia sisters Zainab, 19, Sahar, 17, and Geeti, 13, along with Rona Amir Mohammed, 50, (all Afghan origin) were found dead inside a car that was discovered underwater in front of the northernmost Kingston Mills lock of the Rideau Canal. Zainab, Sahar, and Geeti were daughters of Mohammad Shafia, 58 and his wife Tooba Mohammad Yahya, 41. The couple also had a son Hamed, 20, and three other children. Rona, who was herself infertile, was the first wife of Mohammad Shafia in their polygamous household.

On July 23, 2009, Mohammad, Tooba Yahya, and Hamed were arrested on charges of four counts of first degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder under the guise of honour killing. They were found guilty of all four counts by the jury in January 2012. The trial, which took place at the Frontenac County Court House, was believed to be the first in Canada conducted in four languages – English, French, Dari and Spanish.The trial garnered media attention in Canada for several months, and raised the debate over Canadian values, honour crimes, and violence among Muslim groups.

Toronto Sun

The Toronto Sun is an English-language daily tabloid journalism newspaper published in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Two Solitudes (Canadian society)

"Two Solitudes" refers to a perceived lack of communication, and moreover a lack of will to communicate, between Anglophone and Francophone people in Canada. The term was popularized by Hugh MacLennan's novel Two Solitudes. In her investiture speech as Governor-General of Canada, Michaëlle Jean specifically stated that "the time of 'two solitudes' had finished".

Yukon Party

The Yukon Party (French: Parti du Yukon) is a conservative political party in Yukon, Canada. It is the successor to the Yukon Progressive Conservative Party.

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