1304.5 - Stats Talk WA (Newsletter), May 2006  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 21/03/2006   
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Access to Statistics
As advised in the last issue of Stats Talk, access to all statistics on the ABS web site became free of charge on 12 December 2005. To further improve access for users, the ABS web site was redesigned and has been available in its new format since 27 January this year. These initiatives support the ABS corporate objective of informed and increased use of statistics.
At the same time as access to ABS statistics has been improved, development continues with the National Data Network (NDN) initiative which potentially covers statistics from all sources. The NDN is a platform for acquiring, sharing and integrating data relevant to policy and research in Australia. A new and improved web site now provides all the information stakeholders require to participate in this data networking initiative and the number of data sources on the network continues to grow.

Preparations for the 2006 Census
The Census is the largest statistical collection undertaken in Australia and provides a unique and immensely valuable source of information on our people and their housing.
Preparations for the Census to be conducted on 8 August are gathering momentum in the WA Office and in ABS Offices all around Australia. A team of 35 people have been assembled in the WA Office to oversee the recruitment of census collectors, the operation of information and administrative systems to manage this workforce and the implementation of procedures and strategies to ensure that all people in the State are counted on Census night. An important milestone was the official launch of the Census Recruitment Campaign in WA by His Excellency the Governor, Dr Ken Michael AC on 15 February.

Statistical Leadership
The ABS aims to play a leadership role in the national statistical system by improving the range and quality of statistics available from all sources. To support this objective the ABS has made changes in its organisational structure. A new Deputy Australian Statistician, Jonathan Palmer, has been appointed to lead the strategy and a new branch created in central office to support the work. The WA Office will continue to work with state government agencies promoting improvements in statistics through various means including advocating the use of frameworks and standards, developing skills in the production and analysis of statistics and advising on statistical methods and the management of statistical data.