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Census Update 31 - November 2003 - Correction of Prison Data for Queensland

While the vast majority of data for the 2001 Census of Population of Housing comes from people filling in household forms, in some cases, such as for remote Indigenous communities and the homeless, special enumeration strategies are used. Given the problems associated with having prisoners complete forms themselves, most data for people resident in prisons and detention centres was received for processing in electronic data files.

During internal evaluation following the census, ABS staff discovered that the codes for males and females for Queensland prisons had been transposed in the electronic data file. All other States were correct.

While the total counts were unaffected, this resulted in incorrect sex counts for various geographic areas within Queensland, and as a result, incorrect sex counts for Queensland and Australia. While the difference is relatively small at the Queensland or Australia level, the smaller geographic areas that house prisons may be affected significantly.

This error has now been corrected, with the following actions undertaken to address it:
  • corrigenda for the census hard copy publications have been issued
  • the effects on Estimated Resident Population (ERP) have been evaluated
  • Census Basics clients have been contacted
  • Community Profiles and Snapshots on the ABS web site have been corrected
  • CDATA 2001 clients have been contacted and a patch issued

For more information, contact Philip Mitchell, Assistant Director, Census Products and Services: (02) 6252 5934

Commonwealth of Australia 2008

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