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GiveLife.ca

    

Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006
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PRINT EDITION
Sometimes the fine print is crucial
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Rockwood, Man., has Canada's highest men-to-women ratio, but there's a reason for this: It also has 2 federal penitentiaries
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By KIM HONEY
  
  
Email this article Print this article
Wednesday, July 17, 2002 – Print Edition, Page A5

When Carla Carbone, a transplanted Torontonian, lived in Whistler, B.C., she couldn't help but notice this Rocky Mountain resort's other main attraction.

"You had your pick of men," she remembered. "You'd go into a bar and see all these buff bodies."

The latest Census data from Statistics Canada, released yesterday, back her up. Whistler has one of the country's highest male-to-female ratios in municipalities with more than 5,000 residents.

As Whistler Councillor Stephanie Sloan explains, more men than women are attracted to the thrill of mountain sports.

"It's always been that way in the ski world," she said. "That mountaineering-type thing, up there in the mountains in the cold. A lot of women don't want to do that."

But before husband-hunting singles head for the hills in a bid to bag a committed man, there's one thing Ms. Carbone -- who moved to Whistler to work in the restaurant business with her chef husband -- would like them to know.

The men tend to be transient, either tourists who jet in for a week at a time, or student workers from as far away as Australia.

"I didn't meet anyone who met the love of their life there."

The 2001 Census found that, over all, females make up 51 per cent of the population -- 15.3 million females and 14.7 million males, or 96 men for every 100 women. The differences grow as people age, with 75 men per 100 women aged 65 and older. The extreme is one man for every four women 100 and older.

Rockwood, Man., has Canada's highest ratio of men to women, at 122.8 men to every 100 women. Like many of the municipalities with the highest ratios, there's a reason for the disparity: It's home to two federal penitentiaries, Stony Mountain and Rockwood.

"That's where all the men are and that's where all the men should be," joked Peggy Jenkyns, a receptionist for the municipality.

Prisons and military bases often skew the ratios of men and women in communities.

That's why it's important to probe behind the statistics to find the real reasons for any imbalance in sex ratios, said Wayne McVey, a retired University of Alberta professor who co-wrote a text called Canadian Population.

A large institution can throw a wrench into the sex ratio in a small population, whether it's a jail, a military base, or a nursing home, as can the nature of the work available.

And where there are more women than men, you can count on finding an aging population, since women still outlive men by many years.

That's why Saint-Lambert, a leafy community on Montreal's South Shore, is filled with female denizens.

"Yes, there are more women even walking down the street," confirmed Elvira Popovach, a seamstress who makes custom clothes at Up to Date Tailors. "It's a rich little town."

After Saint-Lambert, where there are 79.1 men for every 100 women, municipalities with the next-lowest male-to-female ratios all show up at the top of the list of the oldest municipalities in Canada, a correlation that Prof. McVey called a "no-brainer."

Men-to-women ratios - the national picture

2001 census data have shown women to outnumber men in the majority of census divisions

City...............Men per 100 Women

Ottawa...................95.1

Montreal.................93.5

Toronto..................93.1

Edmonton.................96.8

Calgary..................99.4

Halifax..................92.7

St. John's, Nfld.........89.2

Provincial ratios

The number of men per 100 women, 2001:

Canada.............96.1

Nfld...............95.8

PEI................94.5

N.S................93.6

N.B................95.7

Quebec.............95.4

Ontario............95.6

Manitoba...........96.4

Sask...............96.9

Alberta............99.9

B.C................96.5

Yukon.............101.5

NWT...............104.8

Nunavut...........107.2

Centenarians are female-dominated

The census enumerated 3,795 people aged 100 and over. For every one man there are four women. They are distributed throughout the provinces in just about the same proportions as the total population:

Men........740

Women....3,055

National average

Average numbers indicated that for every 100 women there are 96.1 men

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