|CCSD Calls on Government to Acknowledge Damage to Census|
Group seeks restitution of proper survey for 2016
(Ottawa) Today's first release of Census data and information concerning the 2011 Census proves the federal government made a massive error in eliminating the mandatory nature of the “long form census” collecting detailed information to guide decision making in Canada, according to one of the largest non-government user of Stats Can data.
The reported participation rate for the National Voluntary Household Survey is just 69% down from 94% in the 2006 Mandatory Census. “This (drop) will prevent many disadvantaged Canadians from having their needs recognized and being able to fully participate in society“ says Canadian Council on Social Development (CCSD) President Peggy Taillon on behalf of the “Equal Right to be Counted” charter challenge group. The group has a court challenge on the census on behalf of vulnerable groups currently awaiting judgment from the Supreme Court of Canada.
Ms. Taillon notes that the Head of Treasury Board today, erroneously referred to the short form data as proof that the cancellation of the long form was justified. His error of course, the National Household Survey data has yet to be released.
“We need much more than a head count and the government promised Canadians that their voluntary survey would work as well or better” Ms. Taillon adds “Clearly that is not the case.” The next five years will be difficult ones for addressing social challenges without accurate census data to rely upon.
Ironically the 2011 NHS costs over 600 Million dollars, 30 million more than the mandatory long form to get a much lower quality data and 27% fewer responses.
“The government should not waste any more money fighting the evidence or trying to justify their action” says Ms. Taillon. “The census results are in: the government should admit its mistake and agree to support a mandatory census in 2016 without delay.”
The group is also requesting the government to sit down and discuss how to prevent potential distortions in government programs from using the flawed data arising from 2011 census particularly as they consider sweeping cuts.
What is the Mandatory Short Form?
What is the National Household Survey?
What Does this Mean?
Read more about the Equal Right to Be Counted Charter Challenge.