Dictionary, Census of Population, 2016
Federal electoral district (FED)

Release date: November 16, 2016


A federal electoral district (FED) is an area represented by a member of the House of Commons. The federal electoral district boundaries used for the 2016 Census are based on the 2013 Representation Order.

Reported in

2016, 2011, 2006, 2001, 1996, 1991, 1986, 1981, 1976, 1971, 1966, 1961


Following the release of population counts from each decennial census, the Chief Electoral Officer determines the number of seats in the House of Commons and publishes the information in the Canada Gazette. Electoral boundaries commissions then determine the adjustments to the constituency boundaries. Based on reports from these commissions, the Chief Electoral Officer prepares a representation order (RO) that describes the boundaries and specifies the name and the population of each federal electoral district (FED). The representation order is in force on the first dissolution of Parliament that occurs at least one year after its proclamation. The 2013 Representation Order (proclaimed on October 5, 2013) was based on 2011 Census population counts, and increased the number of FEDs to 338, up from 308 for the previous 2003 Representation Order. Ontario received additional seats as well as Alberta and British Columbia. The names of FEDs may change at any time through an Act of Parliament.

The 2016 Census was taken according to the 2013 Representation Order. The FED boundaries and names used for the 2016 Census reflect those in effect on January 1, 2016 (the geographic reference date for the 2016 Census of Canada).

Each federal electoral district is assigned a three-digit code. In order to uniquely identify each FED in Canada, the two-digit province/territory (PR) code must precede the FED code. For example:

Table - Examples of federal electoral district codes 
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table - Examples of federal electoral district codes. The information is grouped by PR-FED code (appearing as row headers), FED name (appearing as column headers).
PR-FED code FED name
46 008 Provencher (Man.)
59 023 Port Moody – Coquitlam (B.C.)

Table 1.1 shows the number of federal electoral districts (2013 Representation Order) by province and territory.

Changes prior to the current census

The 2011 and 2006 Censuses were taken according to the 2003 Representation Order.
The 2001 Census was taken according to the 1996 Representation Order.
The 1996 and 1991 Censuses were taken according to the 1987 Representation Order.
The 1986 and 1981 Censuses were taken according to the 1976 Representation Order.
The 1976 and 1971 Censuses were taken according to the 1966 Representation Order.
The 1966 and 1961 Censuses were taken according to the 1952 Representation Order.

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