Census 2011 – clearer picture of Maori needed

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Statistics New Zealand wants to get a clearer picture of the Maori world on census night, March 8th (Tuesday).

More than half a million people or one in seven New Zealanders identified as having Maori ethnicity at the 2006 census, 30 percent up on 2001.

Census manager Carol Slappendal says that trend is expected to continue, which is why the department is mounting a You Count campaign aimed at Maori.

The census provides the best source of information for and about iwi because it includes everyone in the country. For iwi, it provides accurate population counts and of course that sort of information is very important for being able to set goals and monitor progress. she says.

  • Ms Slappendal says the census forms can be filled in on paper on online in English or Te reo Maori.

Information about the census is available in different languages at this link: http://www.census.govt.nz/about-census/resources/about-2011-census-in-other-languages.aspx

There will also be a toll-free Helpline – 0800 CENSUS (0800 236 787) – available from 15 February for callers to talk to people who speak M?ori, Samoan, Tongan, and other languages.

About Our Census

The 2011 Census will count how many people and households there are in New Zealand on Tuesday 8 March, and will provide an official measure of how many New Zealanders identify as Maori.

Everyone must fill it in, including children. Ma tatou. The information is completely confidential.

Statistics New Zealand is working hard to raise awareness among M?ori about the census and why it is important.

Some M?ori were not counted in the last census, because many chose not to fill in the forms.

This means Maori communities may be missing out on what theyre entitled to. The information is used to help decide funding for things like childrens health services and schools, Maori arts and culture centres, te reo Maori services, and services to local communities and recreational facilities. It also affects collective resources and land decisions. Iwi can use the census data to help their people and their communities.

It is very important that everyone in the country on 8 March fills in a census form. Official census collectors will deliver the census forms to every household, or they can be filled in online and in te reo M?ori or English.

The information is completely confidential and protected by law. It will not be shared with any other government department.

There were 565,329 people who identified with the Maori ethnic group living in New Zealand in 2006 (at the time of the last census). This was about 15% of the population (one in seven people). This was 30% more than in 2001, and we expect that this will have increased again. It is important to know by how much, so resources are properly allocated.

Carol Slappendel, General Manager Census said: The census is important because information from it helps determine how billions of dollars of government funding is spent in the community.

It is used to help make decisions about which services are needed and where they should be, such as hospitals, kohanga reo, schools, roads, public transport, and recreational facilities.

Census information also tells you how your community has changed over the years, things like how many people live where you live, what sort of jobs they do and so on.

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