A Comprehensive Study of the Ultra Orthodox Community of Greater Montreal (2003)

Sponsor(s): Federation CJA (Montreal)

Principal Investigator(s): Charles Shahar

Study Dates: 2002-2003

Population Estimates: This study estimates that there are currently 11,025 Frum individuals in Greater Montreal, comprising about 12% of the total Jewish population (92,970) in the city.

Survey focused on demographic structure of the community and service needs within the Frum communities.

Key Findings: 2002-2003 study of the Frum population of Jewish Montreal was completed over an eighteen month period.

About 83% of the total Frum households in Greater Montreal were included in the study. "Such a level of representation easily qualifies this study as a comprehensive Census of the Frum community."

  • The 11,025 members of Monreal's Frum community resided in 2,193 Frum households in Montreal.

  • The average household size in the Frum community is 5.03 individuals. About 40% of Frum households have at least 6 persons (excluding childless households, the average size is 6.22).

  • While the Frum population is 12% of all Jewish persons in Greater Montreal, given the large household size, the 2,193 Frum households represent only 5% of the 41,125 Montreal Jewish households.

  • The mean fertility rate among Frum women is 4.85 children. However, when the fertility rate is corrected for age, the figure is 7.01 children.

  • Almost half (48%) of the Frum community is under age 15; in the overall Jewish population, the comparable percentage is only 20%.

  • 22% of Frum households with children under 5 years of age said they need some type of childcare assistance.

  • There are approximately 480 Holocaust Survivors in the Frum community; 82% of those at least age 75 are Holocaust Survivors.

  • The community with the highest rate of retention is the Tosh community. The Belz and Skver communities are losing about as many married children as those who stay in the city. The most significant losses of population are evident for the Yeshiva and Lubavitch communities.
  • Sample Size: Data file directly linked to questionnaire: 1,819 respondents.

    Zipped data file includes both SPSS Sav and SPSS portable formats.

    Sample Notes: Study is of significance since: "There have been very few studies examining the Frum communities in North America."

    Brief, 5 minute telephone interviews were conducted with 1,819 households of a total of 2,193 Frum households identified over a year and a half period from the Bais Yakov directory and additional lists within the Frum community.

    Strong rabbinical support existed for the project, and was used to obtain the exceptionally high response rate.

    Study Notes: Sample definition of the Frum community from the study: "Actually, the Frum 'community' would more accurately be described in the plural, since it comprises various religious communities with differing orientations and ideologies."

    "A person was considered Frum if they were strictly Shomer Torah."

    "Most of the time it was easy to identify such individuals because they were affiliated with the mainstream Chassidic or Ultra-Orthodox groups, such as Belz, Satmar, Tosch, Skver, Lubavitch, and Yeshivah. We also included individuals affiliated with more obscure communities, such as Munkatch, Viznitz, and Bobov."

    "We also included individuals who were associated with the mainstream groups (that is, davened in their shuls or sent their children to their schools) but would more likely be labeled as Modern Orthodox."

    "Finally, we included Sephardim who lived within the geographic parameters of the study."


    Downloads

    Survey Reports

    » Main Report
    (PDF)

    » Questionnaire
    (PDF)

    » Highlights Report
    (PDF)

    Data Files and Data Definitions

    » Zipped SPSS Data File
    (ZIP)

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