Linguistic Vitality

Slight decrease of French spoken at home...


In 2006, 18,580 people said they spoke French most often at home, compared to 20,430 in 2001. These numbers hide the fact, however, that many Acadians who speak English at home can still speak French and that they use French often outside the home.

In fact, 14,950 more people say they use French at home regularly, even though it isn't the language used most often. This number - which has increased by 2,200 since 2001 - includes 7,415 Nova Scotians whose mother tongue is English, most of them living with an Acadian spouse.
 

French Spoken at Home, 1971-2006, Nova Scotia

French Spoken at Home, 1971-2006, Nova Scotia

Data from: Statistics Canada, 2006 Census

* Statistics Canada started collecting data on other languages spoken regularly at home in 2001

...and knowledge of French is more widespread than ever


In Nova Scotia, the number of people who know French (alone or with English) has doubled since the 1950s. More than 96,000 people, or 10.6 percent of the population, can speak French. This is an increase of 5,000 in five years. There has now been a steady growth in the number of French speakers in Nova Scotia for over 50 years.

German comes second among the minority languages in Nova Scotia with 7,500 speakers, closely followed by Arabic (5,765 speakers).
 

Knowledge of French, 1951-2006, Nova Scotia

Knowledge of French, 1951-2006, Nova Scotia

Data from: Marmen and Corbeil, 2004 and Statistics Canada

French is present in the workplace


According to data from the 2006 Census, 23,570 Nova Scotians, or 41.7 percent of the active population with knowledge of French, use French most often or at least regularly at work. They represent 5 percent of the total active population of the province.
 

Use of French at Work, Active Population with Knowledge of French, 2006, Nova Scotia

Use of French at Work, Active Population with Knowledge of French, 2006, Nova Scotia

Data from: Statistics Canada, 2006 Census