Religious affiliation emerging as key theme in 2016 Census topic consultation

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4 April 2013
Embargo: 11:30 am (Canberra Time)

Religious affiliation emerging as key theme in 2016 Census topic consultation

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has today provided an update on the 2016 Census of Population and Housing public consultation process and outlined the key themes emerging from the submissions received so far.

Since the consultation period began in early November 2012, Australians have been having their say on the proposed content and procedures for the 2016 Census. As of 22 March, 43 submissions have been received, with the religious affiliation topic attracting the highest number of submissions (13).

The submissions received to date support the retention of this topic in the upcoming Census however the majority have requested that the question be modified to better capture information about people with no religion.

Topics such as ancestry, Australian citizenship, long term health conditions and mode of travel to educational institution have also attracted a number of submissions.

In addition, 44 submissions relating to the 2011 Census are also being considered as part of this process.

Head of the Census Program, Duncan Young is thankful to those who have taken the time and effort to make submissions.

”I’d like to thank those organisations and individuals who have taken the time to make submissions about the content and procedures for the 2016 Census.

”This is an important stepping stone in our preparations for the 2016 Census of Population and Housing.

“It is important for the Census program to ensure it remains relevant to Australia and its societal changes,” Mr Young said.

The public consultation process is due to close on Friday, 31 May 2013.

There is still an opportunity for Australians to have their say and we look forward to receiving many more submissions prior to the closing date.

The public will have their final opportunity to attend a public consultation at 2pm, on Friday, 12 April 2013. The ABS has organised a webinar in Canberra with interested parties who are interstate being able to view the presentation live online.

For more information on the topic consultation update, how to attend the webinar or to make a submission, visit

Media note:
  • When reporting ABS data, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or ABS) must be attributed as the source.