Statistics Canada takes a closer look at those who don’t vote

Andy Radia
Politics Reporter
Canada Politics

Elections Canada and Statistics Canada have teamed-up to answer the question: which Canadians vote and which don't?

Utilizing data from a May 2011 labour force survey, Statistics Canada's report, released Friday,  is one of the most comprehensive studies ever done on the topic.

Here are some of the key results:

Voter Turnout By Age and Education

Voting rates increased with both age and education.

In 2011, the turnout rate was about 50 per cent among people age 18 to 24, 70 per cent for those aged 45 to 54, and a whopping 82 per cent for those aged 65 to 74.

In the last federal election, the voting rate among people with a university degree was 78 per cent, compared with rates of 60 per cent or lower among those with a high school education or less.

Voter Turnout By Family type

Not surprisingly, among family types, single parents with young children were the least likely to vote and couples with no young children were the most likely to vote.

Voter Turnout for immigrants

Overall, immigrant citizens were less likely to vote than the Canadian-born. Moreover, turnout rates differed across regions of birth: immigrants born in West Central Asia and the Middle East had a turnout rate of 53 per cent, those born in East Asian countries had a turnout rate of 54 per cent, while those immigrants born in the 'Anglosphere' countries (United States, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand) had the highest turnout rates at 75 per cent.

Voter turnout by employment type

Employed people were more likely to vote than the unemployed, while public sector workers were more likely to vote than their private sector counterparts.

Canadians that voted more often typically held jobs demanding higher skill levels such as management, business, finance and administrative occupations.

Conversely, workers in trades and transport and those in occupations unique to processing, manufacturing and utilities were about five percentage points less likely to vote.

(CP photo)