Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Statistics on Visible Minorities in Youth and Adult Prison Systems

April 4, 2022

Is there a means to discover statistics on visible minority populations in adult and youth prison systems?  I am aware that there are statistics in the data portal for people self-identifying as Indigenous, but that’s only one part of the researcher’s question.  The broader scope of “visible minority”, and the narrower subset of “Black” are at the core of his research.

Public-access resources are best, but the researcher may be open to restricted or licensed resources.

A quick check of the publications of Correctional Services Canada was completed and your researcher might find the statistics from a couple of these publications to be of interest.  

Examples of research topics & publications
    a) Offender Profiles and Forecasting,
Gottschall, S. (2012) Ethnic Diversity in Canadian Federal Offender Admissions. Research Report, R-263. Ottawa, Ontario:  Correctional Service of Canada.

Admission Profile of Ethnocultural Offenders: Emerging Research Results

    b) Health and mental health
Concurrent Disorders and Substance Abuse Disorders among Visible Minority Offenders

*new data tables on visible minority admissions for adult and youth (for select provinces: NS, ON (adults), AB and BC) were released on April 20, 2022.

Census 2021 PUMF Release Date

February 25, 2022

Looking back at the 2016 Census (released February 2019), I am quite certain it won’t be until at least 2023, but I thought I’d ask if there is any anticipated time frame, even general such as Fall 2023, for the release of the 2021 Census?

The 2021 Census PUMF release date should be August 2023 for the Individuals File PUMF and December 2023 for the Hierarchical File PUMF.

Census Boundary Files

November 15, 2021

I have a term project which requires us to write a tutorial on free and open source geospatial software and data. My plan is to write it on how to use Python to perform areal interpolation of Canadian census data.

Up to now I’ve been using U of T's Canadian Census Analyser website to download census profile data in a format which is easy to join to the associated census boundary files but, as that website is not publicly available I will need to use data direct from StatCan. I have looked into their Beyond 20/20 formats, as well as their other methods of publishing profile data, but have not figured out any simple workflows for getting it into a format that can then be easily joined to the census boundary files.

I’ve started work on a Python function which will read in a census comprehensive file (for example) and then return a data frame that contains specific variables of interest as columns, and the census geographies as rows - basically something in the same format that the Census Analyser Website spits out. For example, all of the Ottawa-Gatineau census tracts as rows and the modes of commuting as columns.

Writing this function is not the simplest of tasks but I am getting close. I’m just wondering if I’m missing some app or resource that basically mimics the Census Analyser Website’s functionality but which is free and open source. Should I be spending more time trying to figure out how the StatCan Beyond 20/20 browser works or is there another way?

There are the Boundary files and there are two types: cartographic and digital. Cartographic boundary files portray the geographic areas using only the major land mass of Canada and its coastal islands. Digital boundary files portray the full extent of the geographic areas, including the coastal water area. The boundary files use the Lambert conformal conic projection. Boundary files using geographic projection (latitude and longitude coordinates) are available upon request.

Also, the 2016 Census Profile is available in IVT format which needs to be read using the Beyond 20/20 Professional Browser. This software is relatively user friendly and allows users to navigate through a large dataset. A set of slides is included, which includes a tutorial on how to use the tool.

Portage Website Update

April 6, 2022

As part of the integration of RDM into the Digital Research Alliance of Canada, Portage is very pleased to have launched a new website that integrates all services, including research data management, advanced research computing and research software. With the launch of this new site, will no longer be maintained, and research data management information is now available at

Portage will put redirects in place to help facilitate navigation and allow website visitors to update their bookmarks. The old website will be shut down in the fall, and it has been archived by UBC here. Many thanks to our colleagues at UBC for this work!  

If you have any questions, please contact