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Census will take stock of our mouldy homes

Census will take stock of our mouldy homes

31 July 2017

For the first time in the census, everyone in New Zealand will be asked if their homes are damp or mouldy, Stats NZ said today.

In the upcoming 2018 Census a new topic will contribute to a national picture of the state of homes around the country, Government Statistician Liz MacPherson announced today.

“Census topics need to reflect the changing information needs of New Zealand, and be balanced with the ability to compare data over time. For the first time since 2001, I have decided to include new topics in the census, to help gather robust, independent information that can inform decision-making,” Ms MacPherson said.

“Our consultation highlighted the importance of collecting information on aspects of housing quality that affect health, and that the highest priorities were information about mould, dampness, and access to basic amenities.”

“In next year’s census, people will also be asked to answer a set of internationally comparable questions that will enable us to capture community-level information about people in New Zealand with disabilities.”

“We’ll be adding to the information we already produce from the census, which is used by central and local government, iwi, businesses, and community groups to help make informed decisions about how to plan services and allocate funding.”

Several other topics suggested for inclusion during the consultation period, including questions on sexual orientation and gender identity, were also tested. However, they will not be included in the 2018 Census.

“Following testing, including public testing in 2016, we were disappointed that we were unable to guarantee the quality of the information that we could gather through a self-completed survey such as the census,” Ms MacPherson said.

“Instead, we will include sexual orientation as a topic in our 2018 General Social Survey (New Zealand’s biggest survey of well-being), starting with public testing in September and data collection from April 2018. This survey will provide us with valuable insights about collecting this topic in other surveys in the future.”

“We will also continue working to develop a clear approach for collecting data on gender identity, sexual orientation, and the intersex population. This will include further investigation of the best way to collect the data and how we can guarantee the quality and comparability of the information captured.”


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