Tammie and Guy Wightman with their children Emma and Drew completing a previous Census form.
Tammie and Guy Wightman with their children Emma and Drew completing a previous Census form.

CQ residents face $222 fine per day for not doing Census

Central Queensland households will be put under the microscope of the annual Census in 100 days giving authorities a snapshot of society – and you cold face a fine if you aren’t included.

Conducted every five years, the Census provides the most comprehensive data from our nation and tells us about the economic, social and cultural make-up of the country.

Executive Director Andrew Henderson said the Census data provides a vital tool for governments of all levels, community organisations and businesses.

“Every stat tells a story,” Mr Henderson said.

“It shows a community’s strengths and what’s needed to help them continue to grow. “Transport, schools, health care, roads and buildings are just some of the services Census data helps.”

Every Australian citizen is required to fill out a Census for or be included on one.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics ABS states penalties apply for failing to participate on Tuesday, August 10.

“If you do not complete the Census form, the Australian Statistician has the power to direct you in writing to provide the information,” the ABS stated.

“The Census and Statistics Act 1905 provides for penalties of up to $222 a day for failure to complete and return a form.”

Census 2021 national spokesman Andrew Henderson. Picture: Australian Bureau of Statistics
Census 2021 national spokesman Andrew Henderson. Picture: Australian Bureau of Statistics

Mr Henderson said the statistics gained from the Census will shape the way our country develops.

“For example, Cancer Council uses Census data to target the right demographic groups with education and prevention initiatives to achieve its vision of a cancer-free future,” he said.

“Wheatbelt Business Network uses Census data to help members develop their business and support their small towns.

“And Casey Cardinia Libraries in Victoria uses Census data to help identify language needs in the local community.

“Community members can now access a bilingual book collection and other relevant activities and programs.”

With such important outcomes relying on good quality data the ABS has been preparing to deliver a Census that helps ensure everyone in Australia has an opportunity to participate.

“We’re providing more options for people to complete their Census at a time that suits them,” Mr Henderson said.

“You will be able to fill in your form online, on your phone, tablet, or laptop, or use a paper form if you prefer.

“We also have a lot of support in place to provide people with any extra help they need.

“This includes our Census field staff, phone and online services, Census information hubs in public places to answer peoples’ questions and translated material.

“The Census is a big job and we’re ready for it.”

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