It’s easy to forget an event that only comes around once every 10 years, but today is Census 2021 Day and, if you live in England or Wales, all householders are obliged by law to complete the Census as soon as possible from today onwards.
The census is a survey about all the households in England and Wales. The information you give in the census helps provide the best picture of the needs of everyone. Organisations such as local authorities and charities use this picture to plan and fund the services we all need, including transport, education and healthcare. Without the census, it’d be much more difficult to do this.
What is my information not used for?
Only statistical anonymised information from the Census is made available. For instance no one can see or use your personal information for:
- Decisions about you or any services that you get
- Decisions about your residency applications or immigration status
- Decisions about individual services, such as taxes and benefits
- To find you or sell you anything – your personal information can’t be sold to third parties
- To enforce the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions or from NHS Test and Trace
What is my information used for?
What today’s Census 2021 will be used for is planning for services such as for instance transport, school provision, health services, fire services and housing. As a once in a decade population data gathering event, who knows what else the Census 2021 statistical data might be used for, such as considering areas for Internet provision based on population sizes or planning for ecommerce deliveries – 10 years is a long time before the next Census is scheduled to take place.
The Census 2021 is not optional, there is a £1,000 fine if you fail to complete it but in reality good sense and wanting to ensure there are services available for your and your neighbours when you need them should be more than enough to kick people’s civic sense of duty into operation and get the form filled out. And it’ll only take a few minutes if you do it online using the unique household code you have been sent, although you can request a paper copy to fill out if you don’t have access to the Internet (in which case you’re probably not reading this anyway, but if you have relatives or friends who don’t have the Internet let them know).
If you have yet to do so, you can complete the Census at census.gov.uk