What it measures
This indictor reports the percentage of eligible voters in Canada who register to vote in a federal election. This ratio is one way of showing how effectively the government is communicating with the eligible voters before an election regarding the importance of voting and, to some extent, whether people believe that their vote matters. The number of registered eligible voters has increased since 1994, but with some variability. The highest ratio of registered to eligible voters was in 1994, falling by nearly six points in 1997. The ratio was quite high and stable throughout the early and mid-2000s but unfortunately has fallen in recent years.
Why this matters
Encouraging eligible voters to register is an important step in the democratic process since it is essential to exercising the right to vote. When eligible voters choose not to register for an upcoming election, it reflects higher levels of apathy or disenchantment with the democratic process which is, in turn, associated with lower levels of quality of life.
Indicator data table
Elections Canada: Description of the National Register of Electors