“Canada’s census is an essential tool for government policymakers and Jewish community organizations alike. An accurate portrait of Canadian Jewry requires a survey designed to address the nuances of Jewish respondents, for whom Jewish identity is a blend of religion, ethnicity and peoplehood.
“On the census question of ethnicity, this seems to be where the 2016 survey falls short. Many Jewish respondents, for example, may question whether the survey is asking about the country in which their grandparents lived (such as Poland or Morocco) or their self-identified ethnicity (which many if not most would otherwise indicate as Jewish, if given the option).
“Obviously, the Jewish community didn’t shrink by more than half in the past five years, raising serious questions of methodology. We are examining this issue closely and are in consultation with experts in the field of Jewish demography. Our goal is to propose constructive reforms to the government in order to improve the census and rectify this critical shortcoming.”
— Shimon Koffler Fogel, CIJA CEO