December 16, 2013 8:36 pm
Updated: December 16, 2013 8:39 pm

Canadians giving less to charities: study


ABOVE: Fewer Canadians are giving to charity and when they do they’re being less generous than they used to be. Lauren McNabb reports.

TORONTO – Fewer Canadians are donating to registered charities — and those who do are giving less.

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According to the 2013 Generosity Index compiled by the Fraser Institute, 23 per cent of Canadian tax filers claimed a charitable donation in 2011 compared to 25 per cent who donated in 2005, Canada’s peak charitable year.

“There’s been a downward trend in the proportion of Canadians donating to registered charities and the share of income they donate,” said Charles Lammam, study co-author and resident scholar in economic policy at the Fraser Institute.

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Canadians who are donating are giving less and less every year.

In 2006, Canadians gave 0.81 per cent of their combined income to registered charities. Other than a slight uptake in 2010, that percentage has dropped every year to 0.64 per cent in 2011.

“Had Canadians donated in 2011 at the same rate as 2006, Canada’s charities would have received an additional $2.3 billion in private donations in 2011, for a potential total of $11.1 billion,” Lammam said.

Of those who are donating, Manitobans remain the most charitable.

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In 2011, 26 per cent of Manitoba residents claimed a charitable donation — the country’s highest — while just less than 21 per cent of New Brunswick residents donated – the country’s lowest.

Furthermore, Manitobans also gave the most  to charity, at 0.89 per cent of their combined income, while Quebecers donated the least, at 0.30 per cent. The national average is 0.64 per cent.

According to the study, Americans continue to be more charitable than Canadians.

READ MORE: Canadians no better off financially in 2013

In 2011, 26 per cent of U.S. tax filers donated to charity compared to 23 per cent of Canadians. Americans also gave a higher percentage of their income to charity (1.33 per cent) than Canadians (0.64 per cent).

The Index measures donations to registered charities claimed on personal income tax returns in Canada’s 10 provinces and three territories, the 50 U.S. states, and Washington, D.C.

© 2013 Shaw Media

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