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Tagalog, Hindi and Punjabi are Cranbrook’s fastest growing languages

New data from Statistics Canada shows how residents are communicating
Families are pictured in the fashion show during a previous Multi-Cultural Festival in Cranbrook. The latest census data shows Tagalog and Punjabi speakers as the city’s two largest growing demographics. (Cranbrook Townsman file)

Statistics Canada’s latest 2021 census data released on Wednesday, Aug 17 shows the population of native Tagalog, Hindi and Punjabi speakers as the city’s largest growing demographics.

There are 165 Cranbrook residents whose mother tongue is Punjabi, which grew significantly from 65 speakers recorded during the 2016 census.

There are 90 Cranbrook residents whose mother tongue is the Filipino language Tagalog, growing from 65 speakers in 2016.

Hindi speakers also grew from 15 to 40.

English speakers make up the majority of residents, with 18,250 people in Cranbrook speaking English as their first official language. There are 185 people who speak French as their first official language, down from 200 in 2016. 30 people in Cranbrook do not speak English or French.

READ: Census data shows linguistic diversity on the rise in Canada

The majority of linguistic decreases were among the city’s residents who listed Italian and German as their mother tongues.

There are 110 Italian speakers in Cranbrook, down from 140 in 2016. There are also 190 German speakers in Cranbrook, down from 235 in 2016.

Other highlights from the report include:

- A slight increase in Spanish speaking folks, the 2021 census shows 70, while 2016 reported 60.

- Japanese speakers also decreased, going from 25 in 2016 to 20 in 2021. The number of people who speak Korean also decreased from 65 to 50. 2016 saw 45 Cantonese speakers, which dropped to 35 in 2021.

- Only 15 people said they speak an Indigenous language as their mother tongue, down from 20 in the last census.

- Last year there were 25 Ukrainian speakers in Cranbrook, which is down from 35 in 2016. That number is likely changed due to the arrival of refugees from the Russia-Ukraine war. There were also 35 Russian speakers last year, down from 50 in the previous census.

With files from Black Press reporter Tyler Harper.

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Corey Bullock

About the Author: Corey Bullock

Corey Bullock is a multimedia journalist and writer who grew up in Burlington, Ontario.
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