Fair Vote Canada BC thanks everyone in BC and across Canada who supported proportional representation in BC’s referendum! 

The results of BC’s referendum are a deep disappointment for the volunteers who worked tirelessly across BC for proportional representation. Scroll down to the red box to see what our citizens’ campaign accomplished together.

Five polls close to the end of the referendum showed voting intentions for pro rep and first-past-the-post in a statistical tie, but the final results were 39% for pro rep and 61% for first-past-the-post. A majority of youth voted for proportional representation.

A detailed survey conducted post-referendum exploring what was behind the failure indicated very strong public support for the principles and aims of proportional representation.

Factors behind the NO vote included distrust of this particular process to choose the referendum ballot questions (lack of a citizen-led process) and the effectiveness of the NO side advertising on what people believed about pro rep (page 6). You can check their claims on our expert-backed Fact Check site. Our media reseach report indicates the media also played a role in the outcome.  For an more complete overview of “what happened” see here.

What’s Next?

Fair Vote Canada is a grassroots, non-partisan citizens campaign. Backed by evidence – and powered by people! We’re funded by you – and powered 99% by volunteers. Volunteers and those of you who support us financially are the heart and engine that makes everything possible.

A referendum in PEI is coming up in 2019 or 2020. Legislation for proportional representation – based on a multi-party agreement – is expected in Quebec this year.

We will be working hard to elect MPs in this year’s federal election who will champion proportional representation.

If you support proportional representation and would like to receive updates from Fair Vote Canada, join over 70,000 Canadians and sign the Declaration of Voters’ Rights! www.fairvote.ca/declaration.

If you would like to volunteer with our federal campaign, we need you! Please sign up to help here.

General info:

Anita Nickerson [email protected]

Media Contacts:

Gisela Ruckert (President) [email protected]
Rani Earnhart (Vice President) [email protected]
Keith Poore (Vancouver) [email protected]

With your amazing, generous support, we ran the biggest campaign in Fair Vote Canada’s history.

Here is what we accomplished together:

Our 25 local teams met voters at festivals, on the street and at the door. We ran many “days of action”, gave countless presentations, earned local media, placed local newspaper ads, produced videos, walked in parades, waved signs, hung banners from bridges, and had hundreds of thousands of conversations with voters. To document everything our on-the-ground volunteers accomplished would take 50 pages.

In addition…

  • Our media and letter writing team tracked the media daily for a year and wrote thousands of letters in support of PR
  • We facilitated an expert-backed Fact Checker website to evaluate the claims from both sides
  • We printed and distributed over 250,000 flyers in communities across BC
  • We put up over 6000 lawn signs
  • We ran an ad on the front page of the Province newspaper and put an 8-page insert in 39 local newspapers – reaching 275,000 people
  • We ran Youtube ads – testing 20 different videos – that were viewed for at least 30 seconds 1.86 million times
  • We ran Facebook ads that reached 800,000 people with tens of thousands of link clicks and video views
  • We ran 36 ad spots on CTV that reached 1.6 million people (see the video at the top of the page)
  • We had very active Facebook and Twitter accounts, with thousands of posts from FVC-BC and our local teams on their own accounts. Our weekly engagement on Facebook often beat the official NO campaign!
  • Hundreds of volunteers called to get out the vote for weeks and had phone conversations with at least 15,000 people.

Want to know who’s telling the truth about proportional representation in BC? Check out the research at prorepfactcheck.ca. Backed by electoral reform expert Associate Professor Dennis Pilon and Brian Tanguay, author of the Law Commission of Canada’s report on electoral reform.

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In 2015, three parties - the Liberals, the NDP and the Greens, representing 63% of voters - promised that if elected, 2015 would be the last election under first-past-the-post.

The NDP and Greens promised to implement proportional representation. The Liberals promised to end first-past-the-post, listen to expert advice and follow evidence-based policy on electoral reform, and to "make every vote count."

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