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Survey of Electors Following the 41st General Election

Accessibility

New in 2011, the survey investigated issues surrounding the accessibility of polling sites, which is discussed in this section.

Nearly All Describe Voting Location as Accessible

The vast majority of voters (90%) described the building where they voted as very accessible, with nearly all the rest (8%) describing it as somewhat accessible. Youth expressed more moderate endorsement of the accessibility of their voting locations, being less likely than the general population to consider the building in which they voted very accessible (85% vs. 90%), but more likely to find it somewhat accessible (14% vs. 8%). Aboriginals were roughly comparable to the general population in viewing their voting location as being accessible.

The small number who described the building where they voted as not very or not at all accessible (n=38) offered the following reasons to explain why: physical accessibility (n=14), not enough parking (n=6), imprecise signage (n=5), crowds (n=4), the room inside the building being hard to find (n=2), and the location being inconvenient (n=2).

Perceived Accessibility of Voting Building graph
Text description of "Perceived Accessibility of Voting Building" graph

Sociodemographic differences

Electors with a disability were slightly less likely than those without a disability to say that the building where they voted was either very or somewhat accessible (96% vs. 99%).

There was a positive relationship between the likelihood of saying the voting location was accessible and the likelihood to be satisfied with the service provided by Elections Canada staff overall. Of those who were very satisfied with the service from Elections Canada, 99% found the voting location very or somewhat accessible. Of those who were not at all satisfied with the service from Elections Canada, 82% found the building where they voted somewhat or very accessible.

Most Feel Directional Signs Sufficiently Available

Almost all voters (95%) felt that, once inside the building where they went to vote, there were enough signs to help them find where they needed to go. Fewer, though still a large majority (82%), said that there were enough directional signs outside of the building to help them find the entrance to the polling station. Conversely, 12% said the outdoor directional signs were insufficient, while 5% had no opinion on this.

Perceived Sufficiency of Directional Signs graph
Text description of "Perceived Sufficiency of Directional Signs" graph

Sociodemographic differences

Electors with a disability did not differ in a statistically significant manner from those without a disability in their perceptions of the sufficiency of directional signs either inside our outside of polling sites.

There is a positive relationship between saying that there were sufficient directional signs inside and outside the building, and being satisfied with the service provided by Elections Canada staff overall. Of those who were very satisfied with the service from Elections Canada, 84% said there were sufficient directional signs outside the building and 96% said there were enough inside the building. Of those who were not at all satisfied with Elections Canada service, only 60% said there were sufficient directional signs outside the building and only 47% said there were enough signs inside the building.

The likelihood of saying that there were sufficient directional signs outside the building was lower amongst students (72% vs. 82‑85% of others) and Francophones (75% vs. 85% of Anglophones).

One Third of Electors Noticed a Poster Indicating Wheelchair Access

The majority of voters (55%) did not remember seeing a poster indicating that their polling station had level access for wheelchairs. More than one in ten (12%) were unsure on the point, and only one-third remember having seen such a poster. Of those who remembered the poster, the great majority (94%) indicated that the posters were at least somewhat visible, with 71% rating them as highly visible. Very few (2%) felt the posters were not very visible.

Youth and Aboriginals were more likely to recall the posters indicating wheelchair access than the general population (39/40% vs. 33%). The youth who recalled the posters, however, were less likely to rate them as highly visible (58% vs. 71%), though more likely to rate them as somewhat visible (40% vs. 23%). Recall and Visibility of Poster Indicating Wheelchair Access graph
Text description of "Recall and Visibility of Poster Indicating Wheelchair Access" graph

Sociodemographic differences

Electors with a disability did not differ in a statistically significant manner from those without a disability in their recall of posters indicating wheelchair access or in their rating of the visibility of these posters.

The likelihood of remembering a poster indicating wheelchair access was higher amongst rural residents (38% vs. 31% of urban residents).

The likelihood of rating the posters as highly visible was higher amongst those with high school education or less (77% vs. 59‑70% of those more educated) and Anglophones (73% vs. 63% of Francophones).

Assistance by Poll Staff Main Form of Required Assistance

Very few voters required special assistance to cast their ballot (1%; n=29). Nearly three-quarters of these (73%; n=18) required assistance by poll staff. Other types of assistance, required by 4 people or fewer, included assistance for the visually impaired, assistance by family/friend, a template to mark ballot paper, directions to the polling station, and physical assistance.