In the LFS, information is generally collected by specially trained interviewers using a standard LFS questionnaire, from people in dwellings selected in the LFS. The questionnaire used in the survey is published in Information Paper: Questionnaires used in the Labour Force Survey (cat. no. 6232.0).
Special procedures are used to collect information in some Indigenous communities in remote areas to minimise respondent load and achieve maximum cooperation and response rates. In particular, a 'short form', which collects the minimum data required to derive basic labour force characteristics, is available for use when interviewers encounter significant cultural, language or operational difficulties in remote areas.
From April 2001, the monthly LFS has included a question on Indigenous status. This has enabled information on the Indigenous status of respondents to be collected for each month of the survey, increasing the amount of information available on Indigenous people from the LFS.
The question asked to determine Indigenous status is:
- Is ... of Aboriginal origin, Torres Strait Islander origin or both?
Although the question on Indigenous origin allows people to identify as being of Aboriginal origin only, Torres Strait Islander origin only, or as both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin, it is not feasible to derive separate labour force statistics for these three groups because of the small numbers of Indigenous people in the LFS sample.