Young voters' group expects a strong youth turnout in the 2021 federal election

Future Majority, a group trying to engage young voters across Canada, expects a strong youth turnout in this federal election.

Youth show up at the polls when the issues matter to them, advocate says

Getting out the youth vote

1 year ago
Duration 1:35
Camellia Wong, communications director with the youth voting advocacy group Future Majority, discusses the 2021 federal election, while three young voters in Windsor, Olivia Van Dam, Dave Noel and Azzy Rennie, share their perspectives.

Future Majority, a national non-profit group trying to engage young voters across Canada, expects a strong youth turnout in this federal election.

"Headed into this election, young people are more politically engaged than ever," said Camellia Wong, communications director for the non-partisan organization. 

"We saw it with the 2015 election, we saw with the 2019 election that young Canadians will show up in record numbers if there are are issues at stake at the ballot box that they want to see action on."

Ahead of the Sept. 20 vote, the issues youth are very concerned about are climate change and job stability, she said.

Future Majority was founded in 2019 to get out the youth vote. The organization is targeting those 18 to 35, which includes millennials and Generation Z.

So how is the group trying to reach them? One of the strategies to boost turnout is encouraging people who are committed to voting to get their friends and family on board too.

"We looked at tactics from the 2020 U.S. presidential election, where we saw overwhelming turnout and especially overwhelming youth turnout, and we've taken some of those tactics in order to mobilize young Canadians to get to the polls," Wong said.

Windsor voter Olivia Van Dam is casting a ballot for the first time, likely along with other Gen Z Canadians, she said.

"I think this is election that is really important for a lot of young people now," she said.

"It's the first time we'll really have an impact on the election and I have a lot of hope with a large group of young people voting," she said.

Van Dam said her priorities are Indigenous reconciliation, health care and support for lower and middle-income Canadians.

Azzy Rennie, 28, said that he wasn't really engaged in politics prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. His biggest election concern is vaccine passports, which he says take away from personal freedom.

"It just goes against, in my opinion, your human rights," he said.

Dave Noel, 20, said party leaders are trying to connect with youth — some succeeding and others very much not. But Noel suggested there is interest in casting a ballot — at least among those he knows.

"I know a lot of my friends who are for sure voting, so we can hopefully make sure that this country runs smoothly," Noel said.

With files from Chris Ensing

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