Thou­sands of cen­sus col­lec­tors hit streets

Central Otago Mirror - - FEATURES - By BAR­BARA WITHING­TON

An army of more than 7000, car­ry­ing dis­tinc­tive blue bags, started a march across the coun­try on Satur­day, de­liv­er­ing im­por­tant pa­pers to ev­ery house­hold. Cen­sus Day 2013 is on Tues­day, March 5. On this day the Statis­tics De­part­ment gath­ers as com­plete a pic­ture as pos­si­ble of how many peo­ple are in the coun­try and where they live. The in­for­ma­tion is used to help government de­part­ments make de­ci­sions on fu­ture road­ing and trans­port needs, schools, hos­pi­tals and other ser­vices. Many other or­gan­i­sa­tions are also able to use the in­for­ma­tion once it is col­lated. This year it is hoped more peo­ple will take ad­van­tage of fill­ing out their cen­sus pa­pers on­line, once they have re­ceived their pa­per copies with the per­ti­nent num­bers writ­ten in the top right-hand cor­ner, and their in­ter­net ac­cess code. This safe and se­cure op­tion makes it very easy to fill in the forms as it takes away any ques­tions that do not have to be an­swered by the in­di­vid­ual or the householder. 2013 Cen­sus gen­eral man­ager Carol Slap­pen­del said this cen­sus was one of the most im­por­tant in re­cent times as it fol­lowed the can­cel­la­tion of the 2011 Cen­sus fol­low­ing the Christchurch earth­quake in Fe­bru­ary that year. ‘‘We know Government, lo­cal government, and many oth­ers are keenly await­ing the re­sults of this cen­sus so that they can use the in­for­ma­tion to make wellinformed de­ci­sions for our coun­try and com­mu­ni­ties in the fu­ture.’’ To achieve an ac­cu­rate count of the pop­u­la­tion in the 2013 Cen­sus, Statis­tics New Zealand is em­ploy­ing more than 7500 tem­po­rary work­ers in jobs in­clud­ing district su­per­vi­sors, com­mu­nity li­ai­son ad­vis­ers, and cen­sus col­lec­tors. Col­lec­tors will visit about 1.8 mil­lion homes, de­liv­er­ing 6.4 mil­lion cen­sus forms (4.6 mil­lion in­di­vid­ual and 1.8 mil­lion dwelling forms), and in­ter­net ac­cess codes. It is a le­gal re­quire­ment that ev­ery­one who is in New Zealand on March 5, 2013 must fill in a cen­sus form. Any in­quiries can be an­swered on the helpline, 0800CENSUS (0800 236 787).

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