Review of religious classifications

Media Statement

The ABS has started consultation on a major review of the Australian Standard Classification of Religious Groups (ASCRG) and the associated Religious Affiliation Standard (RAS; the Standard).

The review will update the ASCRG to reflect the modern Australian community; and ensure the Standard, or how we ask the question in the Census of Population and Housing, is inclusive. These updates help us collect high quality data, improving data analysis and decision making.

While the current version of the ASCRG had some minor updates in 2016, it largely reflects the original 1996 version based on the social environment in Australia at that time. The Australian community has changed considerably over this time and the ASCRG and Standard both need to be reviewed to reflect this.

The ABS has also received feedback from individuals and organisations identifying areas that need review. Data from the 2021 Census will further inform the review.

More detailed information outlining the scope of this program of work and time frames is available on the ABS Consultation Hub.

Consultation is due to close on 18 November 2022.

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