Census Day Ahead!

Counting the nation’s population

By Roger Childs

Tuesday March 6 2013 is the big day for the first New Zealand census for seven years. The purpose, according to Area Manager Janet Thompson, is to get the best possible count.

Normally there is a census every five years, but the February 22 earthquake which devastated Christchurch led to the cancellation of the 2011 census just as the forms were being delivered.

Vital information to plan for the future

Census data is vital in deciding how billions of dollars of government funding is spent around the nation. It is used to make decisions about services such as: 

·       hospitals 


·       schools 


·       roads 


·       public transport 


·       retirement homes


·       recreational facilities.

Census information is also used to decide electoral areas and will be employed to adjust the boundaries for the 2014 election. It also provides vital data for councils, community groups, services and businesses to plan for future development.

The nationwide and local organization

There are:

·      4 regions


·      23 areas


·      422 districts


·      6000+ sub-districts (one collector for each)


·      46000+ meshblocks (the smallest census units.)

The Kapiti Coast south of Peka Peka has four districts under the supervision of Sandra McDonald, Glenda Robb, Peter Williams and Roger Childs. 

Not only are people counted but also private homes and dwellings such as rest homes, motels and hospitals which provide short or long term accommodation.

Getting familiar with their districts and especially the non-private dwellings, is a key task for the district supervisors in the lead up to Christmas.

Plenty of collectors needed

The four local districts need over 60 collectors and, according to Sandra McDonald, We need fit, reliable, well organised people with neat printing!

The census website spells out the basic requirements of the job.

The job involves paid work during a six week period from 11 February to 24 March 2013. You will work from home and work flexible hours, although weekend and evening work will be required.

Full training will be provided. We’re looking for people who are comfortable working directly with the public: knocking on doors, delivering and collecting forms, and recording information.

Applications for collectors open on December 7. However people wishing to register their interest in doing the job before then, can do so on the www.census.govt.nz/jobs website.










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