Figures show police departments across Canada are becoming more diverse, albeit slowly, as they shrink in size, while becoming more expensive.
According to Police resources in Canada, 2018 prepared by Statistics Canada, police departments of various categories employed 68,562 officers across Canada as of May 2018, a decrease of 463 from 2017. This figure means 185 officers per 100,000 population, a drop of two per cent from the previous year.
If the cost of policing continues to go, its sociology has also changed, according to the report.
Whereas women accounted for four per cent of officers in 1986, they now make up 22 per cent. Looking at other groups, eight per cent of officers and 12 per cent of recruits self-identified as members of a visible minority in 2018, while four per cent of officers and three per cent of recruits identified as Indigenous.
Notably, the share of police officers and recruits who either identify as a visible minority or as Indigenous remains below the population at large. According to the 2016 census, visible minorities accounted for 22.3 per cent of the Canadian population, while 4.9 per cent identified as Indigenous, with both categories trending upward.