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ConclusionEstimation of Voter Turnout by Age Group and Gender at the 2021 General Election

In 2021, the overall federal voter turnout based on eligible electors decreased by 4.8 percentage points to 62.2% from 67.0% in 2019.

Participation of voters aged 18–24 saw two consecutive decreases in turnout—minus 3.2 percentage points in 2019 and minus 7.2 percentage points in 2021—dropping to 46.7% after seeing the higher turnout set at the 2015 general election (57.1%). While other age groups also saw a decrease from 2019, it was not as large.

For the 2021 general election, women participated at a higher rate (63.8%) than men (60.6%), and this was true across all age groups up to age 65, at which point men started participating equally or more than women. This is the same pattern seen in all general elections since 2008.

When looking at turnout by province, most provinces saw turnout at around the historical average, with two notable exceptions. Both the Northwest Territories and Nunavut saw the lowest turnout in their respective territories since 2004. For Nunavut this trend is especially concerning; this is the second general election in a row that Nunavut saw a double-digit dip in turnout.

Finally, the rising trend of alternative voting methods continued in 2021 with 40.5% of electors choosing to cast a ballot during advance polling days or by special ballot. As was seen in previous elections, this proportion also increases with age. These two factors combined led to a new milestone in 2021. For the oldest voters, aged 65-74 and 75+, ordinary voting is no longer the preferred voting method. Over 50% of these age groups voted using an alternative voting method.