Here are some stats on crime in the two Canadian cities of Winnipeg, Manitoba and Halifax, Nova Scotia. The differences are quite stark. Winnipeg is a much more violent city. To be fair, the Winnipeg metro area has over double the population of the Halifax metro area.
I was in Halifax over a year ago and I was struck by the civility of the downtown area. There were hundreds of students (Halifax is a big university town), also hundreds of tourists from the cruise ships that dock in Halifax harbour, and the remainder of the people on the streets were office workers. No drunken decrepid vagrants that litter the downtown of Winnipeg. In Halifax there were no street patrol security guards. In Winnipeg there are dozens of these guards that patrol the downtown streets desperately trying to keep the aggressive panhandlers and inebriated obnoxious bums at bay.
Walking in downtown Halifax was like walking in Disneyland. Walking in downtown Winnipeg, most of the time, is like walking in a unpredictible potential danger zone with threats lurking in the shadows. Again to be fair, downtown Winnipeg is huge, and there are areas that are quite safe, while on the other hand there are areas where you travel on foot, especially after dark, at your own peril.
In terms of demographics Halifax does not have the vast Aboriginal ghettos that Winnipeg has. Most of the violent crime occurs in these areas. Over eighty percent of the homicides in Winnipeg are committed by Aboriginals against Aboriginals. For some unexplained reason, violence is a terrible but ubiquitous part of contemporary Aboriginal life in Manitoba. In all major North American cities it is disenfranchised minority groups that contribute to most crime. This is not politically correct, but this is a fact. Getting into the philosophy and sociology of why this is would take a book.
When I was in Halifax my friends admitted that there were areas of the city where one did not tread alone at night, there absolutely are Danger Zones they said. But in Winnipeg there are areas where one does not venture by himself in the middle of a sunny day.
Winnipeg crime action
Atlantic Canada has some intimidating people as well
Halifax crime stats to May 15, 2012
|Break and enter||420||374|
|Motor vehicle theft||149||115|
|Theft under $5000||15||32|
|Theft over $5000||1447||1825|