After cyber attacks crippled the online Census, after isolated reports of paper forms not being delivered to some Shoalhaven residences, comes some reassurance that if you haven’t filled it in you won’t be fined.
“We don’t go looking for people to prosecute,” said Michelle Miran, Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) district manager for the Shoalhaven and Nowra.
“We don’t want people worrying they’ll get fines.”- Michelle Miran
Everyone has until the third week of September to fill in the form. In a couple of weeks ABS delivery staff will return to households where there has been no response.
They will check if people received paper forms, or if for reasons apart from the ABS system crash they have been unable to log on - including thinking the online instruction form was junk mail and trashing it.
New log in details can be provided.
“We don’t want people worrying they’ll get fines,” Ms Miran said.
“We previously got a 95 per cent response rate, and past experience has been that the population liked doing the Census and gave us information with great goodwill.”
Ms Miran directed the Shoalhaven and Nowra region for the ABS in the last Census too. The region is large and covers from Windang west to Wildes Meadow, Robertson, Bungonia, along the Nerriga Road to Braidwood, down through Araluen, Deua River and across to the coast as far south as Dalmeny in Eurobodalla Shire.
“We’ve had nearly 300 people in the field delivering paper Census forms and online instruction forms for two weeks,” she said.
“We try to deliver to the hands of householders rather than leave it on the doorstep.
“If there were any gaps in delivery we’re not talking about substantial numbers, very small.
“We also understand some residents may not have computers, or poor or no internet, or be aged.
“If they have not logged on, or not submitted a paper form, field officers will go and see them and we’ll find out they’ve missed out.”
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