It takes time, and is often slow, but the Federal Government of Canada updated their 2021 National Census to include questions on gender identity. Canada is the first country to collect and publish data on gender diversity from a national census.
Of the nearly 30.5 million people in Canada aged 15 and older living in a private household in May 2021, 100,815 were transgender (59,460) or non-binary (41,355), accounting for 0.33% of the population in this age group.
The proportions of transgender and non-binary people were three to seven times higher for Generation Z (born between 1997 and 2006, 0.79%) and millennials (born between 1981 and 1996, 0.51%) than for Generation X (born between 1966 and 1980, 0.19%), baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1965, 0.15%) and the Interwar and Greatest Generations (born in 1945 or earlier, 0.12%).
Over time, the acceptance and understanding of gender and sexual diversity has evolved. Further, there has been social and legislative recognition of transgender, non-binary and LGBTQ2+ people in general. Younger generations may be more comfortable reporting their gender identity than older generations.
In May 2021, the Canadian population aged 15 and older had an average age of 48.0 years. In comparison, the transgender population had an average age of 39.4 years, while the non-binary population had an average age of 30.4 years.
Just under 1 in 100 young adults aged 20 to 24 were non-binary or transgender (0.85%).
Nova Scotia (0.48%), Yukon (0.47%) and British Columbia (0.44%) had the highest proportions of transgender and non-binary people aged 15 and older among provinces and territories.
Victoria (0.75%), Halifax (0.66%) and Fredericton (0.60%) had the most gender diversity among Canadian large urban centres.
Just over half of non-binary people aged 15 and older (52.7%) lived in one of Canada's six largest urban centres: Toronto (15.3%), Montréal (11.0%), Vancouver (10.8%), Ottawa–Gatineau (5.6%), Edmonton (5.4%) and Calgary (4.5%).
Nearly 1 in 6 non-binary people aged 15 and older (15.5%) lived in the downtown core of a large urban centre. This share was more than twice that of transgender people (7.0%) and over three times higher than that of cisgender people (4.7%).