2903.0.55.002 - How Australia Takes a Census, 2006  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/07/2006  First Issue
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All


July 28, 2006
Embargoed 10:00am (AEST)
Lock-up your dogs for Census Collectors

Householders are encouraged to help out their local Census Collector and lock up their dogs during the Census period - 28th July to 28th August.

Collectors have a long and strained relationship with territorial animals, and have been harassed by dogs, horses, bulls, geese, emus, plovers, and even pigs!

According to a 1986 survey of Census collectors, 9% were injured or had clothing damaged due to a dog attack.

Over one in three (38%) Collectors were prevented on at least one occasion from delivering or collecting the Census form by a threatening dog.

There were many other reported instances of dog incidents where the collector was saved by the owner, a neighbour, a passer-by, or even by judicious use of the collector bag.

Also the survey found that not only dogs were causing problems:

"Some collectors also reported encounters with creatures other than dogs. One collector was bitten by a horse and another was 'bailed up' by a horse, while a third met with a large bull standing guard at a house."

"A few collectors were driven off by geese, two were pursued by pet emus, one was attacked by nesting plovers, and another had the misfortune to be chased by a large pig."

The Survey of Dog Problems in the 1986 Population Census was run because the NSW Law Reform Commission was reviewing laws relating to civil and criminal liability in terms of dog attacks on private property and asked the Australian Bureau of Statistics to survey its Census collecting staff concerning their experience of dog attacks.

Census Collectors will soon be visiting every household in Australia. They will be highly visible with their bright yellow bag.