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Newsletters - Age Matters - Issue Number 18, May 2006


Latest News from NASU
Selected ABS Releases
Did You Know?
Upcoming Conferences
Where You Can Find Us
NASU Contact Details


Welcome to the 18th edition of Age Matters. This issue contains:
  • Latest news from NASU – what’s new from the National Ageing Statistics Unit
  • Reviews - of two recently released publications from the ABS
  • Selected ABS releases - a quick guide to selected ABS publications released since March which may be of particular interest to Age Matters readers.
  • 'Did you know?' some interesting data facts on grandparents from the recent release of 'Child Care' (ABS 4402.0)
  • Upcoming conferences - information and links to Australian and International conferences


Work on the Information Development Plan (IDP) for Ageing is progressing with the Phase 1 consultation now completed. The information collated from these workshops is being analysed in conjunction with the key priorities already identified by the National Ageing Statistics Advisory Group.

A draft IDP is currently being prepared and will be provided to a wide range of government, academic and community organisations for further comment prior to final publication of the plan. This broader community consultation is expected to occur in September 2006. If you would like to be involved in this consultation round, please email with IDP Consultation Phase 2 in the subject line.

We would welcome any comments, suggestions or feedback that you may have on this newsletter or the Ageing theme page. Please email and let us know what you think.

Vicki Eckert
National Ageing Statistics Unit


(1) In preparation for the 2006 Census, to be held on the 8 August, the ABS has released Census Household Guide, 2006 which is a guide on how to complete your Census form. In addition to information on the purpose, confidentiality provisions and processes used to collect a census, this release shows the complete list of questions to be asked and also provides some instruction on how each of question should be answered. The guide also includes snippets of information relevant to each set of questions e.g on the 2006 Census form, questions 16 and 17 are about languages, and the Guide advises us that, in 2001 approximately one in five people were born overseas or spoke a language other than English at home.

While the primary purpose of this release is to assist in the collection of the census, potential users of census data will also be interested. The guide is available from the ABS website and is also available in a large print version.

(2) The ABS has released a new issue publication Household Wealth and Wealth Distribution, Australia, 2003-04 which presents a summary of findings about household wealth and wealth distribution in Australia compiled from the 2003-04 Survey of Income and Housing. Wealth is derived from net worth and measures the extent to which the value of household assets exceeds the value of their liabilities. The Survey of Income and Housing collected detailed information about the income, assets, liabilities and household characteristics of persons aged 15 years and over resident in private dwellings throughout Australia.

The statistics in this publication present a broad overview of household wealth related data items. Emphasis has been given to highlighting the differing household net worth compositions and distributions when mean household net worth is cross-classified by various household characteristics, such as income levels and sources, family composition of the household, geographic location and reference person characteristics.


The following listing is a selection of ABS releases published since March 2006 which may be of particular interest to the readers of Ageing Matters.
A complete listing of all ABS releases is available on the ABS Website.

Cat. no. 1370.0 - Measures of Australia’s Progress, 2006
Considers some of the key aspects of progress side by side and discusses how they are linked with one another. It provides a national summary of many of the most important areas of progress, presenting them in a way which can be quickly understood by all Australians.

Census of Population and Housing
Cat. no. 2969.0.55.001 - Census Household Guide, 2006
The Census Household Guide gives you information on how to complete your household form on Census night. Available in large print.

Cat. no. 3105.0.65.001 - Australian Historical Population Statistics, 2006
Contains a wide range of demographic data in spreadsheet format, going back, where possible, to the beginning of European settlement of Australia in 1788. Statistics are included on population size and growth, population distribution, population age-sex structure, births, deaths, migration, marriages and divorces.
Social Statistics
Cat. no. 4363.0.55.001 - National Health Survey: Users' Guide - Electronic Publication, 2004-05
This publication contains information about the 2004/5 National Health Survey, including the survey objectives, methods and design; survey content; data quality and interpretation; and information about the availability of results and comparability with previous surveys.

Cat. no. 4402.0 - Child Care, Australia, Jun 2005
This publication presents information about the use of, and demand for, child care for children aged 0-12 years. Statistics in this publication were obtained from the 2005 Child Care Survey. Information is also presented on the use of the Child Care Benefit and the working arrangements of parents with children aged 0-12 years.

Cat. no. 4509.0 - Crime and Safety,Australia, April 2005
This publication presents the results of the sixth national ABS household survey of crime and safety conducted during April to July 2005. The survey asked that incidents of certain crimes be recorded, regardless of whether they had been reported to police.

Cat. no. 4704.0.55.002 - The Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples: Summary Booklet, 2005
Provides a summarised statistical overview, largely at the national level, of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and welfare. Among the topics included are: maternal and child health; risk factors; ill health; disability and ageing; mortality; and access to, and use of, services.

This summary booklet is based on 4704.0, which is a joint venture between the ABS and Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

Cat. no. 4715.0 - National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey, 2004-05
The 2004-05 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey (NATSIHS) is the largest health survey of Indigenous Australians conducted by the ABS. This publication presents selected data regarding the health of Indigenous Australians. Topics include measures of health status, health actions taken, and lifestyle factors which may influence health.

Cat. no. 4912.1 - Managing Care and Work, New South Wales, Oct 2005
This publication summarises results from the Managing Care and Work survey, conducted during October 2005 throughout New South Wales (NSW). It presents information on the relationship between people's unpaid caring responsibilities and their work situation during the six months prior to the survey.

Labour Statistics and Prices
Cat. no. 6102.0.55.001 - Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods, 2006
This publication provides a comprehensive discussion and description of the concepts and definitions underpinning Australian labour statistics and the data sources and methods used in the collection and compilation of these statistics. It explains what the statistics measure, how the various measures relate to each other and how they are produced. It also discusses the factors influencing their accuracy and reliability.

Cat. no. 6105.0 - Australian Labour Market Statistics, April 2006
This publication draws together data from a range of sources, mostly ABS household and business surveys, to provide an overall picture of the labour market. As well, the annual measures of labour underutilisation have been updated for 2005. The spotlight section of this publication presents the experimental volume measures of labour force underutilisation.

Cat. no. 6202.0 - Labour Force, Australia, April 2006
This publication contains estimates of the civilian labour force derived from the Labour Force Survey component of the Monthly Population Survey. The full time series for estimates from this publication are also available electronically - see Labour Force, Australia, Spreadsheets (cat. no. 6202.0.55.001). More detailed estimates are released one week after this publication in various electronic formats - see Labour Force, Australia, Detailed - Electronic Delivery (cat. no. 6291.0.55.001) and Labour Force, Australia, Detailed, Quarterly (cat. no. 6291.0.55.003).

Cat. no. 6554.0 - Household Wealth and Wealth Distribution, Australia, 2003-04 (New Issue)
This publication presents data from the Survey of Income and Housing (SIH) on estimates of household net worth, or wealth, classified by various characteristics, including summary measures of the distribution of household net worth in Australia.

Secondary Industry and Distribution
Cat. no. 8710.5 - Housing Motivations and Intentions, Western Australia, Oct 2005
This publication contains results from the State Supplementary Survey conducted in Western Australia (WA) in October 2005. It presents information on the motivators that affect Western Australians in the choice of their current dwelling (and location of that dwelling) and their intentions regarding their future choice of housing.


In June 2005, 1.6 million children (i.e. 46% of all children aged 0-12 years) received some type of child care either formal or informal. Informal care, either alone or in combination with formal care was used by 33% (1.1 million) of these children with grandparents as the main informal carer, providing care for 660,000 children.

Child care usage varied with the age of child. The use of informal care was highest for one year olds (43%) and decreased as the age of children increases. Overall, 38% of children aged 0-4 used informal aged care compared to 29% of children aged 5-12 years. Grandparents cared for 55% (84,000) of the 154,000 one year olds who used child care and 39% (46,000) of 120,000 five year olds who used child care.

Of the 660,000 children cared for informally by a grandparent, 85% were from couple families and 15% from one parent families, 97% were from homes where English was the main language spoken at home and only 3% spoke another language while 67% lived in a major city with the remaining 33% located in either a inner regional, outer regional or a rural dwelling.

Of the informal care provided by a grandparent, 77% was provided on weekdays only and for one day only (44%).

The main reason (52%) grandparents provided informal child care was 'work related' i.e the child's parent/s were either at work, looking for work or undertaking work related study or training. There was a slight difference according to the age of the child in the proportion of those who indicated 'work related' as the main reason for the care with 50% of children aged 0-4 years and 54% of children aged 5-12 years old.

Most of the child care undertaken by grandparents was provided at no cost (97%).The extent of child care provided informally and at no cost by grandparents, has resulted in a average cost of less than $6 per week for all types of informal care provided. Informal care provided by a non relative averages at $23 per week while the average weekly cost of formal child care is $49.

From Cat. no. 4402.0 - Child Care, Australia, Jun 2005


18-19 July 2006
Census Analysis Conference
Canberra, ACT

This conference hosted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics will enable users and potential users of Census data to discuss and learn about the analytical and research capabilities of Census data and to learn about new initiatives affecting the 2006 Census. The conference will also influence the ABS' Census output program, particularly those components which support research use. Participants will be able to see how people have used previous Census data and understand how this has benefited their decision making. This conference will be useful to academic researchers, market researchers, and research consultants, and those who use census data to inform policy making and for planning.

For further information see Census Analysis Conference.
23-29 July 2006
XVI ISA World Congress of Sociology
Durban, South Africa

The theme of this congress hosted by the International Sociological Association (ISA) is "The quality of social existence in a globalising world". The location of the congress, Durban, provides the international social science community with an opportunity to encounter a society in transition, in a context that is highly cognisant of the importance of social science in reconstruction and development.

For further information see

13-15 October 2006
3rd International Conference on Healthy Ageing and Longevity

Melbourne, Vic

The best of international and Australian researchers, practitioners and policy makers working in the field of ageing will come together to share ideas and exchange knowledge on ways to best manage the health of the rapidly ageing population. The conference will explore the full spectrum of proven interventions including pharmaceutical, nutritional, clinical, educative, policy, complementary, preventive and restorative means and the scientific underpinnings supporting them. At the same time there will be recognition of the diversity of ageing individuals, cultures and methodologies within all communities and across the globe with the object of promoting healthier, happier and more active lives for all.

For further information see

22-24 November 2006
AAG 2006 National Conference - Diversity in Ageing

Sydney, NSW

This is the 39th National Conference of The Australian Association of Gerontology (AAG). Under the theme 'Diversity in Ageing', areas to be explored through the conference are:
  • Cultural diversity: attitudes to ageing; indigenous ageing; crossing linguistic and ethnic divides to culturally appropriate care; health differences between groups; spiritual needs.
  • Gender diversity: men's ageing; women's ageing; ageing amongst the gay and lesbian community.
  • Health diversity: healthy ageing; ageing well; chronic conditions; acute care; residential care; community care; mental health.
  • Social diversity: social inequality and poverty; economic impact of ageing; globalisation; mature age employment; financial planning; urban/regional planning.

This conference will be of interest to people from a variety of aged care backgrounds such as health care, social workers, policy makers, service providers, education and research professionals, social scientists.

For further information see the Conference website -

5-8 December 2006
Australian Population Association 13th Biennial Conference - Population, Policy and Australia’s Destiny

Adelaide, SA

Main themes for the conference are:
  • Population and Policy in Australia's Future;
  • Population Change and Policy at the Local and Regional Levels;
  • Transnationalism: Australia and Region.
The W.D. Borrie Lecture will be presented by Professor Ian Pool on 'The Baby Boom in New Zealand and Other Western Developed Countries' on 5 December.

Call for papers: Closing date for submissions is 30 June 2006.

For further information see the Conference website -

14-16 December 2006 (tentative)
The International Union for the Scientific Study of Population ( IUSSP) Panel on Ageing in Developing Countries, the Latin American Demography Centre (CELADE), Network for Research on Ageing in Latin America and the Caribbean (REALCE), and the Network of Researchers on Ageing in Developing Countries (University of Michigan) - Seminar on Aging in Developing Countries: Building Bridges for Integrated Research Agendas.
Santiago, Chile

The scientific program seeks to promote discussion on cross-cutting issues of ageing processes, compare alternative study designs for data collection, share information and approaches to key problems, disseminate and encourage the use of existing data sources, and foster the development of new sources capitalizing on past research findings in the developed and developing world.

Deadline for submission of completed unpublished papers is 8 September 2006. See the IUSSP website at:

For further information see the Conference website:

An Ageing theme page containing ageing-relevant information from the ABS and other Commonwealth Government agencies can be found at the ABS web site. The Ageing theme page highlights the type and range of data available for ageing analyses and will be updated to highlight new data releases as they become available.


Vicki Eckert
Telephone: (07) 3222 6232

Assistant Director
Mae Mulheran
Telephone: (07) 3222 6206

Mailing address
National Ageing Statistics Unit (NASU)
Australian Bureau of Statistics
GPO Box 9817,

Fax: (02) 6252 8107

Commonwealth of Australia 2008

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