Citizen Society Research Lab

This report analyzes Albertans’ opinions about six public policy issues, each of which can be conceptualized along a traditional versus progressive dimension. Overall, Albertans are increasingly inclined to support individual choice on these issues. A majority of Albertans now take a progressive, individual choice position on five of the six items.

Over the past decade, opinion has remained relatively consistent on one of the items (capital punishment). However, Albertans are becoming increasingly progressive on the other five items (abortion choice, medical cannabis, medical assistance in dying, same-sex marriage, and recreational cannabis.) Key findings include:

  • Albertans strongly support a woman’s right to make abortion decisions for herself (86.4%). Support has ranged from 77.6% in 2009 to its current high point this year.
  • A majority of Albertans support reinstating capital punishment for people convicted of first degree murder (58.7%). Support has ranged from a low of 53.9 in 2011 to 62.8% in 2018.
  • Albertans overwhelmingly support cannabis remaining legal for medical purposes (92.1%). Support has steadily risen from 73.8% in 2009.
  • Albertans strongly support legal access to medical assistance in dying for those suffering from terminal illnesses (86.4%), a substantial increase from 64.3% in 2009.
  • Albertans strongly support same-sex marriages having equal legal status with traditional marriages (82.8%). Support has increased from 65.7% in 2009.
  • A majority of Albertans are now supportive of legal recreational cannabis. Nearly three of every five Albertans (58.1%) are now supportive while 41.9% are opposed. Support has increased from only 36.5% in 2009.


Download to view the summary data 



Alberta Opinion Structure Fall 2019.pdf