Canadian Youth at Risk and Youth Offending Stats

When looking at a statistical snapshot of what is happening with Canadian youth and the risk of youth offending it really gives some insight as to the seriousness of this.

Sometimes the stats vary when determining the age of youth in Canada but the latest consensus seems to set them at being under the age of 20 and the stats set various age groups as categories for children with one of them being the age group of 15 to 19 years. In this category, the stats show that there are 2.2 million youths.

A statistical snapshot takes into account that it is expected that most youths with make a normal transition into becoming adults, however, there is a portion that are at risk of their psycho-social development being affected adversely as well as them becoming juvenile offenders.

Family Structure

Family structure can be a factor and stats show that going back to 2006 that about 16% of the families in Canada was comprised of just one parent.


15% of the youth in the 15 to 19 year age group were unemployed in 2009.

Mental Health

This is one of the major concerns when it comes to youth and Canada shows some alarming figures. The statistical snapshot shows that young ones between the ages of 12 to 19 amounts to 3.2 million who are at risk for developing depression.

Youth Offenders

One thing that a statistical snapshot for this topic in Canada has difficulty with is producing accurate figures for youth offending in Canada on the whole. It can be narrowed down easier by region but data is not collected as a single source to cover the entire country. One survey conducted on an international level did indicate that 37% of the youth surveyed indicated that they had been involved in at least one form of delinquent behaviour in their lifetime.

Youth Crimes in Canada

The Rainbow Youth provides a space for Canada’s youth to learn and grow into their full potential. We offer programs and assistance to young people who are in dire circumstances and other youths at risk. The decrease in overall youth crime rate has shown that there is hope for this young generation. Join us to reach out to more young people in need.

Youth Crimes

Youth crimes in Canada are still a challenge to be dealt with as of today. Though it has been deemed that crimes involving young people have lowered since the last decade, it is still an ongoing issue that must be addressed.

Young people who are convicted of crime or offence are dealt with under Canada’s ‘Youth Criminal Justice Act’ (YCJA) and the ‘Criminal Code’. 

A brief overview of police-reported youth crime

The table below displays the youth crime for selected offences in 2018 and 2019 according to a reliable statistics body in Canada. The total crime numbers in 2018 are 80,692. The following year has seen a drop to 77,230 crimes. The violent crimes total: 31,609 in 2018 and 32,434 in 2019.

Type of offenceYear 2018Year 2019
Other violations that resulted in death103
Attempted murder4255
Sexual assault level 3 45
Sexual assault level 2 5349
Sexual assault level 12,3062,259
Sexual offence occurring prior to January 4, 19835248
Sexual violations against children1,1651,260
Assault level 3282320
Assault level 24,0494,349
Assault level 112,35512,374
Assault against a peace officer694764
Other assaults113100
Firearms (use of, discharge, and pointing)219227
Forced confinement or kidnapping123145
Human trafficking88
Criminal harassment912922
Uttering threats5,0445,026
Indecent and harassing phone calls436471
Non-consensual distribution of intimate images338385
Offences in relation to sexual services2016
Other violent ‘Criminal Code’ violations333425

Types of Crimes

A list of the most common crimes by young people.

Violent crime

The violent crimes in the past year have seen an increase compared to other youth-related crimes. It has been recorded in 1991 until 2000 that violent crime rose to 12%. Weapons are often used in this type of crime.

Property crime

Property crimes among young people have seen a decrease from 2018 to 2019. From 32,917, it has dropped to 30,051.

Drug crime

A total of 7,409 drug offences were recorded in 2018. It saw a decrease in 2019 with only 2,172. This is a good report compared to the drug-related crimes that double in the years between 1991 and 2006.

School crime

1 out of 10 youth crimes was on school property. This includes assaults, bullying, and other forms of violence. A large percentage of crimes committed on school grounds were drug-related.

Places Where Youth Crimes Occur

Common places where young people commit crimes are in private residences and properties, school properties, and public spaces. 

  • 32% occurred in homes and surrounding areas
  • 23% took place in outdoor public spaces, stores, and office buildings
  • 13% in school grounds

Usual Age of a Youth Offender

In an official survey conducted between 2009 and 2010, the percentage of crimes committed by a certain age are as follows:

  • 32% – 17 years old
  • 26% – 16 years old
  • 20% – 15 years old
  • 12% – 14 years old
  • 6% – 13 years old
  • 2% – 12 years old

This shows that the majority of youth offenders are 16 to 17 years old. Half of the crimes are done by young people under the age of 16.