The 2007 National Justice Survey: Tackling Crime and Public Confidence
- 2.1 Sample
The 2007 National Justice Survey was a household telephone survey of 4,502 Canadians over the age of 18 years. The survey was conducted between February 27 and March 29, 2007 in all ten provinces using a random digit dialling method. On average, interviews were approximately 31 minutes in length. In order to randomly select a single respondent in multi-person households, the individual with the next upcoming birthday was selected.
Response rate in public opinion research is a recurring methodological concern. The central issue is whether or not the sample is actually random, and therefore likely representative of the broader population. The effective response rate for this survey was 9%, which, although low, is relatively consistent with industry norms for a random digit dialling survey. The response rate was calculated as the number of responding participants (i.e., completed interviews, disqualifications and over-quota participants), divided by the number of unresolved numbers (i.e., busy signals, no answer) plus non-responding households or individuals (i.e., refused to participate, language barrier, missed call-backs) plus responding participants.
Response rate=[responding participants/(unresolved numbers + non-responding households + responding participants)]
The sample frame and the provincial margins of error at the 95% confidence level are summarized in Table 1. The sample in each province was intentionally disproportionate to the provincial populations in order to ensure adequate sample sizes at a regional level for analytical purposes.
|Province||N (%)||95% Margin of Error|
|Newfoundland||270 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|Prince Edward Island||271 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|Nova Scotia||270 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|New Brunswick||270 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|Quebec||720 (16.0%)||+/- 3.6%|
|Ontario||720 (16.0%)||+/- 3.6%|
|Manitoba||270 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|Saskatchewan||271 (6.0%)||+/- 5.8%|
|Alberta||720 (16.0%)||+/- 3.6%|
|British Columbia||720 (16.0%)||+/- 3.6%|
|TOTAL||4,502 (100%)||+/- 1.5%|
Just over half of the respondents were women (51.7%), almost two-thirds (63.8%) were married or in a common-law relationship, and approximately one-third (32.1%) had children under the age of 18 living at home. The average age of the respondents was 50.5 years (SD=15.9) and the median annual household income was between $50,000 and $60,000. A small proportion of the sample (3.4%) self-identified as an Aboriginal and 13.2% identified as a member of a visible minority group.
Table 2 provides additional demographic information on the sample. Nearly two-thirds of respondents (61.1%) were working (either full- or part-time), while a quarter of the sample (25.0%) were retired. It appears that the sample is comprised of relatively educated Canadians as more than half (54.2%) had completed some form of post-secondary education. Of the 15.9% of respondents who spoke French most often at home, the vast majority were from Quebec (88.3%), followed by New Brunswick (5.8%) and then Ontario (2.4%). The sample was relatively evenly divided into those that regularly attend religious services, those that attend only on special occasions and those that never attend religious services.
Table 2: Demographics
|Employed full-time||2,245 (50.4%)|
|Employed part-time||476 (10.7%)|
|Stay at home||230 (5.2%)|
|Disability Pension||64 (1.4%)|
|Less than high school||476 (10.7%)|
|High school||1,563 (35.0%)|
|Regular attendance||1,318 (29.7%)|
|Special occasions / irregular attendance||1,608 (36.2%)|
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