Next month’s Census will give insights into how Indigenous communities have changed over the past five years, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
The ABS has teams visiting hard-to-reach areas around Australia ahead of the August 9 survey.
Steven Pearce, the leader of the census remote area mobile team, has driven 4500km across northern Australia in the last two weeks.
“Within the 160,000 square kilometre area which I’m helping to count, I estimate there’d be less than 3,000 people living here, but that does not mean the data is less important,” Mr Pearce said.
“My primary task now is to make contact with the communities and all the relevant stakeholders in those communities and lay a bit of groundwork which will enable us to carry out the Census in as efficient manner as possible.”
In WA, six mobile teams are travelling to communities from the Goldfields to Wiluna, the East Pilbara and Karratha areas, working with local people and communities.
The national Census has been a part of Australia since just after Federation and provides the most comprehensive and accurate picture of the country’s changing population.
Data collected supports funding decisions for services and infrastructure including housing, transport, education, industry, hospitals, and the environment.
The ABS says this year’s census could be the biggest online event in Australia’s history. About 16 million people are expected to complete their census forms online.
“Later this month and into early August, the ABS will deliver some 10 million letters to every household around the country in preparation for Census night,” head of the 2016 census Duncan Young said.
“These letters will be addressed ‘To the Resident’ and include a unique login and instructions on how to complete the Census online, as well as details on how to request a paper Census form.”
Mr Young said the ABS’ 105 Remote Area Mobile teams highlight the ABS’ extensive efforts to ensure everyone in Australia completes a Census form wherever they are on Census night.