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StatsCan Hiring for 2016 Census, which Will Replace the Voluntary Survey

by Yvonne von Jena | January 9, 2016


Replacing the Voluntary Census  The previous Harper government had eliminated the twice-a-decade mandatory census in favour of a voluntary national household survey, but the new Trudeau government undid that change in November and has remained true to its word. StatsCan Is Hiring StatsCan is currently hiring 1,400 to work in its census operations centers in Ottawa and Gatineau, as per its website.  It is also planning to hold early enumeration in some rural parts of the country, and those jobs have to be in place by February, while the majority of the rest of the positions will start their tenures in April or May. Voluntary Survey Provided Lower-Quality Data Many statisticians argued the voluntary survey provided lower-quality data that was not comparable with the higher-quality data from earlier censuses. In some communities, the response rate to the voluntary survey was so low that no data exists on these locations from the 2011 survey. According to an article in the Globe in January 2015, "the cancellation of the mandatory long-form census has damaged research in key areas, from how immigrants are doing in the labour market to how the middle class is faring, while making it more difficult for cities to ensure taxpayer dollars are being spent wisely, planners and researchers say". Said Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development last fall when announcing the return of the census, "We need good, reliable data."


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