Why people don't vote

VERNON SMALL
Last updated 14:51 31/01/2014

Relevant offers

Politics

More powers for spy agencies, but can we hope for more transparency? David Seymour opens up about love and loss - and his new gig as a columnist David v Jacinda: Spread the love – take Waitangi Day on the road Waitangi Day's annual hikoi opposes TPPA Throwing dildo at Steven Joyce appals John Key TPPA signed, sealed, delivered – it's ours Steven Joyce and #dildogate: Internet goes into overdrive Hutt South MP Trevor Mallard supports boy racer caught clocking up 210kmh in highway race Political projectiles through history Steven Joyce hit by sex toy thrown by protester at Waitangi

The young, the poor and recent migrants were less likely to turn out for parliamentary elections than other voters, a survey has found.

The Statistics NZ survey found the most common reason given for not voting in the 2008 and 2011 General Elections was they "didn't get round to it, forgot or weren't interested", with 21 per cent of non-voters citing that reason.

A further 7 per cent did not vote because they felt their vote would not make a difference.

"It's interesting to see that this group has nearly doubled since the 2008 General Election," general social survey manager Philip Walker said.

Age, income, and migrant status also made a difference to voting behaviour.

The survey found 42 per cent of 18-24-year-olds said they did not vote in 2011.

"People who feel they don't have enough money to meet their daily needs are also less likely to vote," Walker said.

Recent migrants had low voting rates, while migrants who had been in New Zealand for longer periods had very similar voting behaviour to those born here.

The Electoral Commission has welcomed the report.

"Declining voter engagement in our Parliamentary democracy is a problem that affects all of us and it will take a national effort to turn this worrying trend around," chief electoral officer Robert Peden said.

"This research will further increase understanding of the problem, which is a necessary step in finding solutions." Turnout in the 2011 election was 74.21 per cent, the lowest for more than a century.

Ad Feedback

- Fairfax Media

Comments

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should the speed limit be raised to 110kmh on some roads?

Yes

No

Vote Result

Related story: 110kmh limit moves closer

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content