Everyone is legally obliged to fill in and return the census,
but another good reason people should participate is because
the documents will provide vital information for communities,
including the rapidly growing Queenstown Lakes district.
Southern DHB medical officer of health Dr Keith Reid said,
from a healthcare perspective, the census ''provides
information on the make-up of society'' which is ''key to
understanding the health needs of our communities''.
''Information such as how many old and young people we have,
where they live, what conditions they live in, how educated
they are and what their incomes are help us better to
understand how healthcare services should be targeted to
achieve the biggest health gain for our communities,'' Dr
Over time, the patterns seen in the information help
healthcare services understand how effective they have been,
Queenstown Lakes District Council communications manager
Meaghan Miller said the information was critical for agencies
in the area to understand growth, especially considering the
Queenstown Lakes district is ''one of the fastest growing
Ms Miller said the council could not wait to receive growth
information from a four-yearly census, so independent
modelling was also done.
''Last census the growth rate the census data showed was
comparable to the stuff we had done ... so it's valuable in
''It's absolutely critical that everybody participates; for
us it's really essential information.''
The Ministry of Education explained it might use census
information in some way, but in the case of school roll
projections alternative sources were used.
''National school roll projections are based on the
ministry's own data on current school rolls, school retention
[to different ages and year levels] together with Statistics
New Zealand's information on existing numbers of children in
the population at different ages; projections for numbers of
births and on migrations,'' a ministry spokesperson said.
Statistics New Zealand postponed the 2011 census due to the
February Canterbury earthquake and, in September 2011,
declared March 5, 2013, to be Census Day.