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One month until delayed Census

Tuesday 5 Feb 2013 12:57 p.m.

After a two-year delay, the Census will take place in one month's time.

The Census was scheduled for March 2011, but was postponed due to the February earthquake in Christchurch, which displaced thousands of residents.

The Government was forced to change the law to put the Census off for two years, and it will be held on March 5.

More than two million forms are expected to be completed online this year, and internet access codes will be delivered alongside paper forms from February 16.

In total, more than 7000 Census collectors will visit 1.8 million homes to deliver 6.4 million census forms – this includes 4.6 million individual forms and 1.8 million dwelling forms.

Collectors will also visit cruise ships, prisons and hospitals to deliver forms.

"It's a huge undertaking, but one that gives the information needed by Government and other agencies to plan for the future," Statistics Minister Maurice Williamson says.

The Census will collect important information about how Canterbury has changed following the earthquakes in the region, and planners will be able to see how the population has shifted.

Community liaison advisers are also working to boost the involvement of Maori, Pasifika and other ethnic communities, which have had significant undercounts in previous censuses.


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