The institution of marriage is thriving in Abbotsford and Mission.
According to the latest 2011 Family, Households, and Marital Status Census information, released Wednesday by Statistics Canada, three-quarters (76 per cent) of all families in the Abbotsford-Mission Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) are married couple families.
That’s higher than the provincial average of 72 per cent, and the national average (67 per cent). It is also higher than any other CMA.
“Correspondingly, Abbotsford-Mission has one of the lowest shares of common-law couple families and lone parent families which are the other two components of census families,” explained Nora Bohnert, a demographer for Statistics Canada.
Common-law makes up nine per cent of families while single parent consists of 15 per cent.
For the first time, the census tracked step-family statistics and Bohnert said this category locally also has one of the lowest shares in the country. Step-families in the Abby/Mission CMA make up about one in every 12 families, while the national average is one in eight.
In total, there are 47,405 families in this CMA, an increase of 6.9 per cent over the 2006 census.
In terms of of children aged 14 and under, “Abbotsford-Mission has the highest share of children that are living in the same household as a grandparent,” Bohnert said. About one in 10 live in the same home as a grandparent, double the national average of one in 20.
She said 6.6 per cent of local households consist of at least one parent and one grandparent.
From a household perspective, Bohnert said Abbotsford and Mission differ from the national average once again.
“More households are comprised of couples with children than households comprised with households without children. While at the national level it is the reverse.”
The local CMA had 29.4 per cent of all households comprised of couples with children and 28.1 per cent couples without children. In Canada, 26.5 of households are couples with children and 29.5 per cent are couples without children.
Other statistics show that the Abbotsford-Mission CMA has 40,245 total couples, an increase of 6.2 per cent from 2006. Of those couples, 35,875 are married and 4,370 are common law.
Of the married couples, 20,055 have children (up 3.4 per cent from 2006) and 15,820 do not (up 9.8 per cent). In common-law households, 1,945 have children (an increase of 14.7 per cent) while 2,425 (up 0.4 per cent) do not.
In Abbotsford alone, there are 6,150 people who are widowed – 1,200 men and 4,950 women. There is a total of 205,300 widowers in B.C.
Abbotsford is also home to 6,075 divorcees, 2,405 men and 3,675 women. The provincial total is 246,515.
Abbotsford has 5,325 single parent homes. Of those 4,250 are single mothers.
For complete census data, go to statcan.gc.ca