Selection of Indicators
There were literally thousands of possible indicators that Vital Signs could have evaluated. Some indicators are used in Vital Signs reports in communities across Canada. For other indicators, we relied heavily on the community advisory groups. Some suggested indicators could not be included, because we were not able to get recent or reliable data for them. Ultimately, each indicator was chosen to be understandable, relevant to community concerns, a neutral, objective and commonly used measure of local conditions, as current as possible, trackable for future reports and relevant to many different audiences. We wanted the indicators taken together to give a complete picture of the conditions and circumstances in our community and to help to provide a focus on the future and long-term needs.
Some of the data compilations from Statistics Canada and others do not include the whole of Powell River. In some cases, the Census Agglomeration (CA) is used. The CA includes the City, Regional District Areas B and C, and land belonging to the Sechelt Nation (all south of town), but not Electoral Area A or the Tla’amin community (all north of town). It contains 802.87 km2 of our area and 80% of the residents. Unless noted, this report relies on data that include the most complete coverage, and we refer to all these data as being for Powell River or for the region. Any variations in results for the same item caused by differences in the coverage areas are not significant for our purposes.
Some of the data was compiled by Community Foundations of Canada (CFC). CFC is the national membership organization that connects and supports Canada’s 191 community foundations from coast to coast. The Vital Signs team also gathered statistics from local Powell River organizations as well as other reliable sources. Data sources for all 2015 indicators can be found on the Data Sources 2015 page.
In general, when this report refers to a family, it means a “census family”, which is a married/common law couple of the same or opposite sex, or grandparents if parents are not present, and children, if any, living in the same dwelling. It also includes a lone parent and children (but not a lone parent without children). This report refers to the value of dollars for the year reported, except where “current dollars” are noted in the item itself. The last Canada-wide census was conducted in 2011, and the data from that census are now four years old. Although the census data are still mostly accurate for Powell River, this report used more current data from other sources where possible.
Community and Youth Surveys
Information on the Vital Signs community survey and youth survey can be found on the Surveys page.