Map: Canada's most common non-official languages

Map: What are the most common languages in Canada after English and French?

Jesse Tahirali, CTVNews.ca


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According to the census, about 6.5 million Canadians regularly speak a language other than English or French at home -- nearly as many as the seven million who only use French in their household.

Here’s a breakdown of what Canadians across the country are using to communicate.

In British Columbia, of those speaking only an official language at home, the majority are speaking a Chinese language -- 357,860 out of the province’s 4,356,205 people, or just over eight per cent of the total population. (The census breaks down Chinese language as Mandarin, Cantonese or one of five other dialects, but also has a category for “Chinese not otherwise specified.”)

More than 25 per cent of people speak a third language in Canada’s west-most province. The next most spoken languages in B.C. are Punjabi with 182,920 speakers and German at 73,625.

In Alberta, 19 per cent are speaking a language other than English and French – 700,000 out of 3.6 million people.

Leading the way again is Chinese language with 105,130 speakers, followed by German with 80,905 speakers and Tagalog, a language spoken in the Philippines, at 60,090.

To Alberta’s east are Saskatchewan’s 129,030 third-language-speakers representing 12.7 per cent of their population. German speakers are at the top of the prairie province’s list at 25,415, followed by 21,945 speakers of the aboriginal language Cree and 13,150 people speaking Ukrainian at home.

More than one-fifth of Manitoba residents speak a non-official language -- 256,500 out of 1,193,095. Like Saskatchewan, most of those quarter-million speak German. Next to German’s 67,155 speakers, 34,260 speak Tagalog.

In the country’s most populated province, one-quarter of all people speak something other than English and French at home. Ontario has 3,264,435 non-official language speakers out of 12,722,065 residents. Chinese languages are again the most popular with 513,170 speakers, followed by Italian at 251,330 and Spanish at 178,335.

Quebec -- a province where 78 per cent of the province’s nearly eight million residents speak French – has more third-language speakers than English speakers. Out of their nearly one-million non-official-language speakers, 140,035 speak Arabic, followed by 131,855 Spanish-speakers and 113,815 Italian speakers.

In New Brunswick, very few people speak something other than English and French. But of the province’s 2.5 per cent of people who don’t, the most speak Mi'kmaq, with 2,120, followed closely by Chinese language at 1,830, Korean at 1,810 and German at 1,800.

Nova Scotia doesn’t have many more non-official language speakers -- only about four per cent of the provinces 910,620 residents. Like Quebec, most of them are speaking Arabic at 5,960, with Mi'kmaq accounting for 4,620 people and Chinese languages accounting for 4,320.

Most of the 3.5 per cent of Prince Edward Island’s non-Anglophone and non-Francophone population speak Chinese languages: 1,595 people. Dutch gets an honourable mention and its only appearance on the most-popular list with 465 speakers.

And in Newfoundland and Labrador, the Innu/Montagnais language leads the way with 2,035 speakers. Next on the list of the province’s 1.7 per cent third-language speakers come Chinese Language speakers with 1,230.

Up to the territories -- Yukon has 805 German speakers in its crowd of 3,625 non-official language speakers (10.7 per cent of the population) and the Northwest Territories have 1,960 speakers of the Tlico language out of its 8,045 non-official language speakers (19.6 per cent of the population).

Almost 70 per cent of people in Nunavut speak something other than English and French at home. The majority of people speak Inuktitut -- 21,225 out of 31,770 total residents.

Figures taken from “Detailed Mother Tongue (232), Detailed Language Spoken Most Often at Home (232), Other Languages Spoken Regularly at Home (9) and Sex (3) for the Population Excluding Institutional Residents”