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Survey of Electors Following the April 3, 2017, By-elections in Calgary Heritage (Alberta), Calgary Midnapore (Alberta), Markham–Thornhill, (Ontario), Ottawa–Vanier (Ontario) and Saint-Laurent (Quebec)


Awareness of By-election and Voter Information

  • Most respondents (86%) were aware of the by-election, but it should be noted that this is lower than usual.
  • Almost two thirds (62%) of those who were aware of the by-election recalled seeing advertising or communications from EC about how, when and where to vote.
  • Electors who recalled seeing advertisements or communications about the by-election were most likely to have noticed it from the following sources:
    • Voter information card (VIC) (27%)
    • Newspapers (25%)
    • EC householder brochure/leaflet (25%)

Voter Information Card and Registration

  • The vast majority of electors received their VIC (89%) and brought it to vote (88%).
  • Almost everyone who received their VIC said it had the correct name (98%) or address (99%) on it.
  • Roughly four in five (79%) electors knew that voters need to be registered to vote in a federal election.
  • About three out of five (58%) electors were aware of Elections Canada's Online Voter Registration Service.

Voting and Voter Participation

  • Among those who were aware of the by-election, almost two thirds (64%) said they voted.
  • Of those who were aware of the by-election but said that they did not vote, more than half (53%) stated that it was due to everyday life issues or health issues.
  • A clear majority (74%) of those who voted used the polling stations on election day.
  • Among non-voters, many (65%) said they would have used the Elections Canada website to vote.

Voter Identification

  • The majority (78%) knew that there are voter identification requirements for voting in federal elections.
  • Almost everyone (98%) was aware that voters had to provide proof of identity; fewer (91%) were aware that voters had to provide proof of address.
  • Almost everyone (99%) reported having brought the required identification documents and most (98%) found it easy to meet the identification requirements—91% said very easy and 7% said somewhat easy.

Voter Experience and Fairness of the By-election

  • Satisfaction with the voting experience (98%) and with Elections Canada staff (98%) was widespread.
  • Most thought Elections Canada ran the by-election fairly (84%) and trust the accuracy of the results (91%).