4914.0.55.001 - Newsletter: Age Matters, Jun 2004  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/07/2004   
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The second issue of
Measures of Australia's Progress (cat. no. 1370.0) was released on 21 April 2004. It is an ABS contribution to the national discussion about whether life in Australia is getting better.

Measures of Australia's Progress covers: Health, Education, Work, National income, Financial hardship, National wealth, National wealth, Housing, Productivity, The natural landscape, The human environment (air quality), Oceans and estuaries, International environmental concerns (Greenhouse), Family, community and social cohesion, Crime, Democracy, governance and citizenship.

Headline indicators that summarise progress in each area are included for most dimensions: health, for example, uses life expectancy at birth; national income uses real net national disposable income per capita. Commentary that accompanies the indicators discusses trends in progress together with differences within Australia and the factors influencing change. The aspects of national progress are linked with one another. Changes in one aspect will be associated with changes in many others — sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse.

Older people, ageing and progress

Much of the information in MAP is broken down by age, and MAP 2004 contains a good deal of information pertinent to older Australians and the ageing population. For instance:

    • The Health commentary discusses trends in life expectancy at birth, the proportions of Australians living to certain ages, and information about cancer and heart attacks.
    • The Family, community and social cohesion commentary discusses changes in the numbers of people living alone, and the number of people caring for the elderly.
    • An article on Multiple disadvantage discusses the patterns of, and associations between, various aspects of disadvantage as they affect different population groups, including men and women older than 65 and older people living alone.
    • An article on Population, participation and productivity discusses the way demographic change, labour force participation rates and productivity determine national income.

Measures of Australia's Progress is freely available on the ABS website. Go to www.abs.gov.au and you will see a link to the publication (under the "Statistical Products and Services" heading). Printed copies are available from the ABS.

For more information, contact Jon Hall in Canberra on (02) 6252 7221 or email jon.hall@abs.gov.au.

Australian Social Trends
(cat. no. 4102.0) was released on 15 June 2004. This annual publication presents statistical analysis and commentary on a wide range of current social issues. The 30 plus articles are organised into eight chapters, representing the following broad areas of interest: population; family and community; health; education and training; work; economic resources; and housing, as well as a chapter of articles covering other areas of social concern. Each chapter is supported by a set of summary tables including key social indicators which provide an overview of social change over the past decade, as well as how social conditions differ across Australian states and territories. A set of international tables also compares Australia with 17 other nations.

Further details are in
Australian Social Trends (cat. no. 4102.0). For further enquiries please contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070.

Working Arrangements, Australia
(cat. no 6342.0) was released on 9 June 2004. This publication provides information on characteristics of working arrangements of employed persons, including the flexibility of working arrangements and shift work. Among the topics covered are full-time/part-time status, industry, occupation, hours worked, flex time, rostered days off, overtime, absences from work, types of leave used, weekly earnings, availability of child care and information about core employment benefits, such as leave entitlements. Estimates can be cross-classified by labour force demographics such as state, sex, age, marital status and birthplace.

Further details are in
Working Arrangements, Australia (cat. no. 6342.0). For further enquiries please contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070.