Employment Profile of English Speakers in Québec


About this report

Sithandazile Kuzviwanza, Director of Policy & Research, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Morgan Gagnon, Policy Researcher, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Joshua Loo, Policy Research Intern, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Nicholas Salter, Executive Director, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Chad Walcott, Director of Engagement & Communications, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Maria De las Salas, Communications & Engagement Specialist, Provincial Employment Roundtable

Marla Williams, Consultant


The information presented in the report outlines the unique set of challenges and opportunities facing Québec’s English-speakers in Québec’s labour market.

It contributes to the knowledge and understanding of the employment issues in Québec’s English-speaking communities by surveying the most comprehensive information on the demographic and labour force conditions for English speakers across Québec’s 17 administrative regions.

Key Findings:

  • Québec’s English speakers have an unemployment rate of 8.9%. This is higher than the provincial unemployment rate (7.2)% and 2% higher than the unemployment rate of French speakers (6.9%).
  • In 15 of Québec’s 17 administrative regions, English speakers have higher unemployment rates than French speakers. This is especially true in Côte-Nord where the unemployment rate of English speakers is 25.5%.
  • In 14 out of the 17 administrative regions, English speakers have a median after-tax income that is lower than that of French speakers and the total population. 
  • English speakers tend to have lower labour force participation in resource and manufacturing oriented regions such as Estrie, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Nord-du-Québec, Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine and the Laurentides. 
  • English speakers often face difficulties in adapting and transitioning into French-language workplaces and require additional support in making the transition into the labour market.
  • For those that seek out French-language training, programs are not always accessible and are not usually targeted towards individuals looking to enter or advance in the labour market or specific sectors of the labour market.


This profile relies primarily on data from two sources: the 2016 Census of Canada and the Institut de la Statistique du Québec. The profile uses 25% sample data from the 2016 Census. The 25% sample data is drawn from the approximately 25% of Canadian private households who received a long-form questionnaire. 

The data in this profile is organized by Québec’s 17 administrative regions. Administrative regions serve to organize the allocation and delivery of government services in Québec.