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Public Opinion Survey Following the March 19th, 2012 By-election in Toronto–Danforth (Ontario)

Voter Experience

This section explores issues related to voter experience at the polls.Footnote 12

Most Left Home to Vote

Most respondents said that when they went to vote, they did so from home (85%). Twelve percent went to vote from work and 3% from another location.

Where Were You Coming From When Going to Vote?
Text description of "Where Were You Coming From When Going to Vote?"

Sociodemographic differences

As one would expect, the likelihood of coming from home to vote was higher among electors 65 and over (95%), as well as those who are unemployed (98%) and who stay at home full-time (95%). In addition, electors with a disability (94%) and those with a household income under $40,000 (90%) were more likely to have gone to vote from their home.

Convenient Distance, Polling Stations Easy to Find

Almost everyone felt that the distance to the polling station was convenient for them (98%), and had no difficulty reaching it (99%). The very small number who did have difficulty finding the polling station (n=3) pointed to the physical accessibility of the building and the address being hard to find.

Experience at Polling Station

Everyone surveyed was served in English and was satisfied with the language in which they were served at the polling station.Footnote 13 Almost all the voters surveyed (99%) said that the waiting time for voting was reasonable. Only two percent of voters needed special assistance to cast their ballot. Voters who needed assistance (n=9) were most likely to seek assistance from staff at the polling station (n=5). Two respondents used a template to mark their ballot and one sought help from a friend or family member.

Experience at Polling Station
31. Did you bring your Voter Information Card with you to the polling station?  
Yes 88%
No 10%
DK/NR 2%
32. In which language were you served?  
English 100%
32a. Were you satisfied or not with the language in which you were served?  
Yes, satisfied 100%
33. Would you say that the waiting time for voting was reasonable?  
Yes 99%
No 1%
34. Did you need special assistance to cast your ballot?  
Yes 2%
No 98%

Base: 610; those who voted (except by mail)

High Level of Satisfaction with Elections Canada Staff

Satisfaction was strong and widespread with the services provided by Elections Canada staff. Fully 99% were satisfied with this, with 88% reporting having been very satisfied. Satisfaction with Elections Canada staff at polling stations is virtually unchanged from 2011 (87% were very satisfied, while 11% were somewhat satisfied).

Satisfaction with Services Provided by EC Staff
Text description of "Satisfaction with Services Provided by EC Staff"

Sociodemographic differences

Compared to electors under 25 years, all of which were satisfied with the services provided by Elections Canada staff, respondents aged 65+ (96%) were slightly less likely to be satisfied with the services.

Voting Considered Easy

There was a virtual consensus that it was easy to vote, with 87% viewing this as very easy, and almost all the rest finding it somewhat easy (12%). These results are similar to those of the 2011 general elections, when 92% said that it was very easy and 7% somewhat easy.

Ease of Voting
Text description of "Ease of Voting"

Footnote 12 The questions in this module were asked of all respondents who went to vote at a polling station on election day or on advance polling days.

Footnote 13 Regarding satisfaction, only two respondents were not satisfied (due to rounding, the table on the next page reports the percentage as 100).