1301.6.55.001 - Statistical News Tasmania (Newsletter), Apr 2004  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/04/2004   
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In this issue:

ABS Services available at the Hobart Office
About the Library Extension Program
Outposted officer projects
Census Update No 32 released
The Census on Ice
Children and Youth theme page
General Social Survey results
Health Risk Factors - smoking, drinking and poor diet of Australians
National Regional Profile launched
What's happening with Agriculture statistics?
Changes to Labour Force statistics
Building Statistics news
Selected recent and expected releases


Client Services

When you need to engage professional, timely and objective statistical consultancy services, first consider the range of services available from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The ABS Hobart Office has a team of consultants available to answer all your information and statistical enquiries on a fee for service basis. Our consultants can assist you with provision of data for the most recent period available or on a time series basis. They can provide tailored reports containing tables, commentary and maps which highlight the characteristics of a target market. To discuss your information needs contact the ABS Client Services or email mary.eagle@abs.gov.au


Library Extension Program

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Library Extension Program is a national partnership program between the ABS and Australian libraries. Established in 1991, the Library Extension Program (LEP) was established to provide important access points to free ABS statistics for the community. It is a free service to libraries. There are 16 LEP libraries in Tasmania from the TAFE, Public and University sectors. These libraries offer a free service to all ABS publications published since 1998 via the eLEP service. They also provide a comprehensive range of Census material including CLIB.
If you would like to know more about the LEP please contact Mary Eagle on 03 62 225812 or email mary.eagle@abs.gov.au

CLIB - Release 3 - final release

CLIB is a census product provided free to libraries eligible through the Library Extension Program. It provides comprehensive census data in an easy to use form.
CLIB 2001 Release 3 includes the following census community profiles:
  • Basic Community Profile - 33 tables from Australia down to Collection District. Includes Local Government Area (LGA)
  • Expanded Community Profile - 49 tables from Australia to Statistical Local Area (SLA). Includes LGA
  • Indigenous Profile - 29 tables for Australia, State/Territory (S/T), ATSIC Regions, Indigenous Areas and Indigenous Locations
  • Time Series Profile - 22 tables from Australia to SLA for 1991, 1996 and 2001 censuses
  • Usual Residents Profile - 28 tables from Australia to SLA. Includes LGA and Postal Areas (POA)
  • Working Population Profile - 19 tables of Journey to Work study areas for all SLAs
  • Classification Counts - for S/T and Capital City Statistical Divisions

If you would like to know more about CLIB 2001 please contact Mary Eagle on 03 62 225812 or email mary.eagle@abs.gov.au

Each year the ABS undertakes a number of outposted statistical projects for State government agencies, based on submissions to the Tasmanian Statistical Advisory Committee (TSAC). Projects which assist agencies in reporting on or developing Tasmania Together benchmarks are given a high priority. Four such projects are planned or under way for 2003-04.

The first project, completed in October 2003, was to develop an information database for Mental Health Services (part of DHHS), which integrated administrative and ABS data. The database output was based on ABS national statistical standards and assisted evidence based policy decisions within the agency by enhancing the quality and relatability of mental health services data.

At the same time, a collaborative project being sponsored by the three State agencies of Police, Justice and Health to investigate the development of an integrated re-offender dataset has commenced. It is proposed that the dataset will integrate selected data currently held by the separate agencies, in order provide an overall picture of the history of reoffenders in the justice and health systems, as well as enabling the reporting of Tasmania Together benchmarks. This project has also received the support of the ABS National Centre for Crime and Justice Statistics.

Another project which has recently commenced, will investigate improvements to workforce planning and profiling statistics for the Office of the State Service Commissioner (DPAC). Improvements envisaged will include the promotion of statistical standards and definitions in the data items used by individual State agencies, to enable more consistent and reliable reporting on a variety of Tasmania Together benchmarks. The project will also look at identifying key indicators from the aggregated data for use in analysis and forecasting models.

The final project for the year is examining the data requirements of the Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) Children and Families Division. This project is closely aligned with a strategic business analysis project designed to improve both service delivery and associated data collection methods. The expected outcome of the outposting is an improvement in the range and integrity of the data collected, which will make possible a wider range of reports and analyses, as well as an enhanced capacity to comply with national reporting requirements.
For more information on any of these projects please contact David O'Brien on 03 6222 5783 or email dj.obrien@abs.gov.au.CENSUS UPDATE NUMBER 32 RELEASED

Census Update is a regular newsletter that keeps you informed about the latest census products and services. In this edition there is a special feature to celebrate Australia's population reaching 20,000,000. We look at the range of research projects being undertaken through the Australian Census Analytic Program, some of which have recently been published on the ABS web site. We also discuss the new CDROM product Census for Schools, which allows school students to study and analyse census data in a classroom environment. Census for Schools contains a vast amount of census data combined with digital geographic boundaries. Students can select from a range of topics including education, housing, transport, religion, ethnicity and computer use, and then create maps, graphs and reports. They can also import data that they have collected themselves or obtained from other sources, and combine it with census data on the same map.

The census aims to count all people in Australia on Census night, with the exception of foreign diplomats and their families. Also included are those people outside Australia who are not required to undertake migration formalities, such as those on oil and gas rigs or on Australian Antarctic bases.

When determining the date of the census, the ABS aims to select a date which minimises the number of people who will be away from their usual residence. School holidays on or close to the date of the census increase collection difficulties and lowers the quality of data.

For this reason, the last few censuses have been held in early August. However, holding the census in winter makes it extremely difficult to enumerate those in Antarctica.

Census forms are shipped from Tasmania to Antarctica months in advance to make sure the residents of Antarctic bases receive their Census forms before the ice closes in and they become cut-off for the winter. Together with the rest of Australia, they fill in their forms on Census night. However unlike the vast majority of people who live in private dwellings and fill in household forms, they receive personal forms so as not to compromise their privacy.

Two months after the census, the ice finally thaws enough to allow the forms to be despatched on the first ship to Australia. They are collated by staff in the ABS' Tasmanian office before being sent to the Data Processing Centre for processing.

For 2006, it is anticipated many of the difficulties with collection in Antarctica will be solved through use of the internet. Rather than providing paper forms and having them collected some months later, people in Antarctic bases will simply complete and submit their census form over the internet. Not only will this allow considerable cost savings, it will also allow the results of the census to be processed more quickly.


The National Children and Youth Statistics Unit (NCYSU) launched a new Theme page on children and youth on the ABS web site in November 2003. The Children and Youth Theme Page is designed as a statistical guide for users with a particular interest in the issues affecting this important population group. The Theme Page provides information on key ABS data sources, publications, articles and forthcoming releases, and relevant non-ABS sources. It also provides a link to the NCYSU newsletter, which features recent developments in this field of statistics.

The Children and Youth Theme Page can be accessed through the ABS web site by selecting ‘Themes’ from the navigator bar on the left hand side of the ABS home page (www.abs.gov.au), and then clicking on ‘Children and Youth’ under the People sub-heading on the next page.

For further information contact Carrington Shepherd on 08 9360 5255 or email carrington.shepherd@abs.gov.au

The General Social Survey brings together a wide range of information from different areas of social concern. Topics include health, housing, education, work, income, financial stress, assets and liabilities, transport, family and community, and crime.

Summary results of the 2002 General Social Survey survey for Australia were released in General Social Survey: Summary Results, Australia, 2002 (cat. no. 4159.0) in December 2003. The data cube which has just been released presents results for Tasmania in the same (Excel spreadsheet) table layouts as provided for Australia level data in the publication.

Summary tables are presented for different population groups and selected themes, together with more detailed cross classified tables covering selected topics. Further information about this survey can be found in 2002 General Social Survey: Users' Guide (cat. no. 4159.0.55.002) which is available on the ABS web site, or by contacting Living Conditions Section of the ABS on Canberra (02) 6252 5508.

Australian men still risk preventable disease through smoking, drinking and poor diet

In 2001, Australian men aged 18 years and over were more likely than women to smoke, drink alcohol at risky levels, be overweight, and have a poor diet according to a report from the National Health Survey recently released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Over one-third (37%) of Australians aged 12 years and over did not eat adequate amounts of fruit and vegetables. Men aged 18 years and over who lived alone were particularly likely to not eat adequate amounts of fruit and vegetables (52%), when compared to all men (43%), and women who lived alone (36%).

Nearly one-quarter of people (24%) aged 18 years and over were smokers, down from 28% in 1989–90. Most adults reported responsible and safe levels of alcohol consumption for their long-term health (89%).

Smokers were more likely to consume alcohol at levels that risked their long term health if continued (17% of smokers), compared to ex-smokers (12%) and those who had never smoked (6%).

Approximately 44% of people aged 15 years and over were overweight or obese in 2001, an increase from 36% in 1989–90. More males over 15 years (52%) were overweight or obese than females (37%).

Further details are in
National Health Survey: Health Risk Factors, Australia NATIONAL REGIONAL PROFILE LAUNCHED

A new, easy and free way for decision-makers to measure, evaluate and compare the performance of regions in Australia was recently released. The National Regional Profile was produced in response to widespread demand from communities and organisations such as Regional Development Boards for an easily accessible range of ABS and non-ABS statistical information in a one-stop shop format.

Available from the Local Government Area level up to the national level, the profiles combine a range of information including population, births and deaths, unemployment, remoteness, income support customers, taxable income, wage and salary earners, building approvals and motor vehicle sales.
The National Regional Profile can be downloaded free from this site.

For regional information specifically Tasmanian, you might also try Regional Statistics, Tasmania, which provides a taste of the ABS and non-ABS data available for Tasmanian regions. Regional Statistics, Tasmania can be downloaded free from this site.

Did you know that drought was the single most important factor affecting agricultural production in Australia in 2002-03. The 'one in a hundred year drought' saw harvests fall to levels significantly below normal years, and sheep numbers at the lowest level for more than 50 years.

If you would like to know more about the impact the drought has had on agricultural production and livestock the following publications
Principal Agricultural Commodities, Australia, (cat. no. 7111.0) and
Value of Principal Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia, (cat. no. 7501.0) will provide you with preliminary data from the 2002-03 Agricultural commodities survey and preliminary data from the Value of Agricultural Commodities survey 2002-03.

For further information about these publications or other Agricultural statistics please contact Gordon Cameron on 03 62 225939 or e-mail gordon.cameron@abs.gov.au in the Agricultural Statistics client services area in the Hobart office of the ABS.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has introduced a number of improvements to labour force statistics over the past few months.

The first of these improvements is to the seasonal adjustment processes used for the Labour Force Survey (LFS). The new processes lead to better seasonally adjusted and trend estimates, and remove some of the volatility evident in labour force statistics around major holiday periods. These processes were introduced with the release of December 2003 LFS data, on 15 January 2004.

The second group of improvements include: (i) introduction of 2001 Census based population benchmarks (with revisions back to January 1999); (ii) improvements to regional labour force estimates by introducing regional population benchmarks; and (iii) better alignment with international standards on the treatment of 'future starters' not actively looking for work. These changes were introduced with the release of February 2004 LFS data, on 11 March 2004.

More details on these changes are available in Information Paper: Forthcoming Changes to Labour Force Statistics (cat. no. 6292.0). This information paper is available free from the ABS web site <https://www.abs.gov.au>.

Building Approvals (original terms)

There were 201 dwelling units approved in Tasmania during February 2004, including 186 new houses, according to Building Approvals, Australia (cat. no. 8731.0). This compares to 198 dwelling units approved during January 2004, including 176 new houses. The number of dwelling units approved in February 2004 increased by 32% from the 152 approvals recorded in February 2003.

At current prices, the value of total building approved in Tasmania was $47.8m in February 2004, which was slightly above the January 2004 figure of $45.9m and 18% above the February 2003 figure of $40.4m. Residential building contributed $33.5m and non-residential building $14.3m in February 2004.
8731.0 Building Approvals, Australia is released monthly, and free Main Features are available on this web site.

Building activity

Quarterly building activity statistics for Tasmania are available in the publication Building Activity, Australia (cat. no. 8752.0). An associated data cube and time series spreadsheets are also available, and free Main Features can be found on the ABS website, which include some state and territory data for the value of work done.
For further statistical information contact Peter Bradbury (02) 6252 6565 or email: peter.bradbury@abs.gov.au
For data enquiries contact: Mary Eagle on (03) 62 225812 or email mary.eagle@abs.gov.au

4648.0.55.001 Detailed Energy Statistics, Australia 2001-02 (released 24/03/04)
1101.0 Catalogue of Publications and Products 2004 (released 29/3/04)
8731.0 Building Approvals, Australia Feb 2004 (released 30/3/04)
1350.0 Australian Economic Indicators Apr 2004 (released 31/3/04)
4509.0.55.002 Crime and Safety Survey: Expanded Confidentialised Unit Record File (released 31/3/04) A computer file containing unidentified person and household records from the 2002 Crime and Safety Survey. The file is accessible through the Remote Access Data Laboratory
8501.0 Retail Trade, Australia Feb 2004 (released 31/3/04)
6354.0 Job Vacancies, Australia Feb 2004 (released 1/4/04)
7218.0.55.001 Livestock and Meat, Australia - Electronic Publication (released 1/4/04)
6105.0 Australian Labour Market Statistics Apr 2004 (released 2/4/04)
1353.0 Integrated Regional Data Base (IRDB), Australia 2004 (released 5/4/04)
4616.5.55.001 Domestic Water Use, Western Australia Oct 2003 (released 6/4/04) Contains data on water-using appliances and the water use behaviour of households in WA. Includes information about sources of water used; types of hot water systems installed; use of washing machines, dishwashers, toilets, showers and baths; types of fixed air conditioners installed; whether mulch is used on the garden; methods used to water gardens/lawns; reuse of water; and types of swimming pools.
6202.0 Labour Force, Australia Mar 2004 $22.00 (released 8/4/04)
1303.6 Tasmanian Statistical Indicators Apr 2004 $22.00 (released 8/4/04)
3401.0 Overseas Arrivals and Departures, Australia Feb 2004 (expected release 13/4/04)
4130.0.55.001 Housing Occupancy and Costs, Australia (expected release 13/4/04)
Contains data from the Survey of Income and Housing Costs on Australian housing costs (rates, mortgage and rent payments) and relates these to characteristics of occupants and dwellings such as tenure, household composition, dwelling structure, age, income and principal source of income. Also includes value of dwelling estimates for capital cities, and information on recent home buyers.
4819.0.55.001 Asthma in Australia: a snapshot (expected release 19/4/04)
A brief overview of the differentials in prevalence, asthma management and quality of life of people with current and long-term asthma, using data from the 2001 ABS National Health Survey.
8752.0 Building Activity, Australia Dec 2003 (expected release 19/4/04)
1380.0.55.001 Occasional Paper: Perspectives on Women's Employment in Regional Australia, 2001 Census (expected release 20/4/04) In this issue data from the 2001 Census of Population and Housing has been used to present some perspectives on the characteristics of women in employment in rural and regional Australia.
1370.0 Measures of Australia's Progress 2004 (expected release 21/4/04)
2054.0 Australian Census Analytic Program: Australians' Ancestry: 2001 (expected release 21/4/04) Examines a number of issues relating to ethnic diversity, ethnic intermixture and the development of the concept of 'Australian Ancestry' through a comprehensive analysis of the Census ancestry data.
8635.0 Tourist Accommodation, Australia Dec 2003 (expected release 22/4/04)
8663.0 Real Estate Services, Australia 2002-03 (expected release 22/4/04)
9314.0 Sales of New Motor Vehicles, Australia (Electronic Publication) (expected release 23/4/04)
3412.0 Migration, Australia 2002-03 (expected release 28/4/04)
6401.0 Consumer Price Index, Australia Mar 2004 (expected release 28/4/04)
8127.0 Characteristics of Small Business, Australia 2003 (expected release 28/4/04)
8159.3 Household Telephone Connections, Queensland (expected release 29/4/04)
First Issue: The publication will provide information on persons in households who have mobile phones, the number of telephone connections per household, the type of connections (eg phone, fax, internet) and the number of telephone connections listed in the residential White Pages.