Make sure you count in the census

IT'S shaping up as the Coffs Coast's night of nights in determining our direction for the next five years and beyond.

Census night tomorrow will shine the spotlight here and across the nation, creating a statistical snapshot to be used as the definitive planning guide for our future.

Everyone is counted to capture the true picture of where we've come from and where we're headed.

Locally it means funding can be flagged for sectors in need and the breakdown of population trends will give an insight into our quality of life and highlight infrastructure needs.

To that end, the Australian Bureau of Statistics encourages all of us to accurately complete our census forms.

“It's vital that every person is included in the census as the information provided is used in planning the future of our country,” said NSW census director Mark Harding.

“The census lights the way forward for planning services you use every day such as roads, transport, schools and health services.

“More than $4000 per person was given to the states and territories in the 2010-11 Budget and this was worked out using census data.”

When we look at Coffs Harbour local government area figures from 2001 and 2006, for example, we can see the number of unemployed dropped from 3404 to 2492, a 32% reduction over those five years.

We also know the average household income here has gone up by $140.30 a week.

These examples show how Coffs Harbour has progressed and the 2011 census will reveal a new portrait of our region.

Mr Harding says the census counts everyone in Australia on census night, whether they are working, partying or at home.

More information is available online at www.abs.gov.au/census.

Phone: 1300 338 776.

If you can’t fill out a form on census night, fill it out as soon as possible and answer the questions as if it were census night.

If you’re travelling “off the beaten track” on census night, collection points with Census packs are available (visit the website for details).

If you’re staying at a hospital, hotel, motel or hostel, ask the managers for an eCensus envelope or paper census form.



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