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Collection of Census Forms Begins

Collection of Census Forms Begins

Statistics New Zealand collectors start picking up completed census forms today, following Census Day yesterday. Households will be visited over the next 11 days.

"Unless you've filled in your forms online, your completed paper forms will be collected some time between today and Sunday, 19 March," said Government Statistician Brian Pink.

The same collector who delivered the forms will return to collect them. Statistics New Zealand collectors can be recognised by their official photo ID badge and large blue bag with the wording 'Statistics New Zealand' clearly visible. Mr Pink said, "If you are unsure whether they are an official collector, ask to see their ID.”

Mr Pink encouraged everyone to have their forms ready for the collector and said that if you have not yet filled in your form, it is not too late. "You can still fill in your form – just base your responses on what you were doing and where you were on 7 March," he said. "It is most important that everyone in New Zealand on census night is counted."

Statistics NZ’s 24-hour helpline is still available, on 0800 CENSUS (0800 236 787). "If you are having difficulty filling in your census forms, help is as close as your phone," said Mr Pink.

Operators can answer questions in eight languages: English, Mäori, Samoan, Tongan, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and Hindi. English and Mäori language help is offered 24 hours a day until 31 March, with help in other languages available from 7:00am to 10:00pm.

A text messaging communications system is being used to notify collectors when people have completed their forms online, so they know how many paper forms to collect from each household.

"If all people in a household complete their forms online, the collector does not need to return there," said Mr Pink.

Under the Statistics Act 1975, all information collected is used only for statistical purposes, and is kept confidential. Any information that could identify an individual is not published or otherwise disclosed.

@ "If you know your collector or want to take extra steps to protect your privacy, ask your collector for a privacy envelope," said Mr Pink. "Your collector is not allowed to open this envelope." Collectors aim to pick up as many completed census forms as possible in person and will return if no-one is at home on their first visit. If collectors cannot contact residents to pick up the completed forms before 19 March, they will leave a freepost envelope.

Statistics NZ recommends that anyone who hasn’t had forms collected or received a freepost envelope by Friday, 17 March, should contact the helpline on 0800 CENSUS (0800 236 787).

Brian Pink
Government Statistician

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