An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act (voting age)

This bill was previously introduced in the 43rd Parliament, 1st Session.


Don Davies  NDP

Introduced as a private member’s bill. (These don’t often become law.)


Introduced, as of Sept. 23, 2020

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This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Canada Elections Act to lower the federal voting age in Canada from 18 to 16 years of age.


All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Canada Elections ActRoutine Proceedings

March 24th, 2021 / 4:40 p.m.
See context


Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act (voting age).

Madam Speaker, it is an honour to present this bill, not for the first time but as a reintroduction with some modifications, to change the Elections Act such that Canadians aged 16 years and older can vote.

Certainly we see a crisis in the youngest demographic in this country not voting. Clear empirical evidence that we reviewed when we had a special committee on electoral reform pointed in the direction that people who start voting stick with their voting habit, but if we do not vote when we become eligible to vote at age 18, we are unlikely to start at 25 or 30. Voting at age 16 is a key way of refreshing, restarting and rebooting our democracy.

I note parenthetically that there was a similar bill that I also supported before the House, Bill C-240, from the member for Vancouver Kingsway, as well as one started in the other place by independent Senator McPhedran, Bill S-209. I certainly hope the House will be able to debate and vote on one of these worthy pieces of legislation to improve the state of our democracy.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Canada Elections ActRoutine Proceedings

March 12th, 2020 / 10:30 a.m.
See context


Don Davies NDP Vancouver Kingsway, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-240, an act to amend the Canada Elections Act with regard to voting age.

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise today to introduce legislation that would extend the right to vote to all Canadians aged 16 and over. I would like to thank the hon. member for London—Fanshawe for seconding the bill.

The history of the franchise in Canada is one of constant expansion. At the time of Confederation, voting was restricted to male British subjects who were at least 21 years old and owned property. However, as our country progressed over the subsequent generations, voting rights were extended to women, Asian Canadians, indigenous people, those without property and those under 21 years of age. I believe it is time to give young people the full rights and responsibilities of citizenship as well.

Young Canadians are engaged, well-informed and passionate advocates for a better future, for their future. Many young people work and pay taxes, but they have no say in how those tax dollars are spent. This disenfranchisement is unjustified and must change.

I call on all Parliamentarians to make young people equal participants in our democracy by supporting this vital legislation.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)