POLITICS

One in three people in territories say they were a crime victim: 2009 survey

01/26/2012 09:56 EST | Updated 03/27/2012 05:12 EDT
OTTAWA - Statistics Canada says a 2009 survey shows that one in three residents of the northern territories over the age of 15 reported being a victim of crime at least once in the previous year.

It says 46 per cent of the 38,000 self-reported crime incidents were violent, with assault being the most common.

That contrasts with the rest of the country where 70 per cent of reported crimes were non-violent.

The survey says about one in five violent incidents in the territories was reported to have been committed by a current or former spouse or partner.

Rates of spousal violence were highest for young adults aged 15 to 34, aboriginal people and those living in a low-income household.

For violent incidents that did not involve a spouse, two-thirds of victims said they knew the assailant and 78 per cent said the incident could be related to alcohol or drug use.

Statistics Canada says sampling and data collection methods differ between the provinces and territories, meaning it's hard to make direct comparisons between North and South.

The survey found there were 13,400 crimes against households reported in the territories in 2009, or 379 incidents for every 1,000 households.

Of these crimes, 41 per cent involved theft of property.

Despite the numbers, the survey found that more than nine residents in 10 in the territories reported being satisfied with their personal safety. And 88 per cent said they believed the police were doing an average or good job in ensuring the safety of citizens.