|Short-form census stays|
By Steven Chase - Globe and Mail
The Harper government is pouring cold water on a Conservative MP’s suggestion that this year’s short-form census might be the last one Canadians are ever required to complete.
The Tories faced a backlash from researchers, economists and business groups in 2010 when they converted the longer, 50-plus-question version of the census to a voluntary survey. The mandatory long form used to go to one-fifth of Canadian households.
All households must still fill out the short-form census, which contains 10 questions seeking basic information from birth dates to languages spoken.
St. Catharines, Ont., Conservative MP Rick Dykstra revived the census controversy on Thursday after he told his local paper that the Conservatives would make the short-form optional, too.
“We’ve already changed the long-form census so that it is not mandatory, and that is, frankly, the road we are going with the short-form census as well,” Mr. Dykstra told The Standard in St. Catharines. “I frankly don’t think this is the sort of thing a person should be penalized to do.”