All ages enjoyed the sunshine, delicious food, and great music the Sidney Street Market offered over the summer. Data released in the 2019 Vital Signs report reveals that 85 per cent of respondents described themselves as happy, and 73 per cent rate their sense of mental well-being as high. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Happiness rates high in Greater Victoria: Vital Signs report

At least 85 per cent of participants describe themselves as happy

The majority of Greater Victoria residents feel happy, supported and satisfied, according to Victoria Foundation’s newly-released 2019 Vital Signs report.

READ ALSO: UBC study focuses on reducing the fear of being too happy

Asked questions about quality of life and community connectedness, 84 per cent of respondents described themselves as happy, 84 per cent said they feel supported by loving family, companions and friends, and 63 per cent said they are satisfied with their work and home life balance.

At least 72 per cent rated their general sense of mental well-being as high.

But a whopping 40 per cent of transgender people reported feeling uncomfortable due to discrimination. Of other respondents, only three per cent of women and two per cent of men reported feeling uncomfortable due to discrimination.

That number is down by 17 per cent from 2018, when 57 per cent of transgender respondents reported discomfort and discrimination – compared to only five per cent of other female respondents and seven per cent of other males.

The Vital Signs report is compiled from a self-reported citizen opinion survey. This year 1,695 people from the region participated, answering questions on happiness and connection, and providing more than 11,000 comments on issue areas.

“Improve opportunities for people with disabilities to integrate into learning environments,” noted one participant.

Another wrote: “The standard of living is great for those who are wealthy and can afford to enjoy the beauty of Victoria and its natural surroundings. For everyone else, not so much.”

One participant said: “I think Greater Victoria is doing well with encouraging alternative, environmentally-friendly transportation.”

READ ALSO: Happy Hygge housing breaking ground in Sidney

Participants were 52 per cent female, 46 per cent male and one per cent identified as transgender. The majority of respondents – 27 per cent – were retired, followed by 20 per cent employed in business. Only eight per cent of respondents made less than $20,000 a year.

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