ABS will not retain names and addresses as part of the 2006 census, Mar 2005

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MEDIA RELEASE

March 17, 2005
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
17/2005


ABS will not retain names and addresses as part of the 2006 census


The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) will not retain names and addresses as part of the 2006 census.

Head of the census program, Paul Williams, said that the ABS was discussing a number of ways as to how it might enhance the 2006 census to support research that is in the public interest. These options would make the census more useful for policy, planning and research purposes.

"As a result of these discussions, the ABS has decided that this will not involve the retention of name and address information," he said.

If there was any significant proposal to change current practices regarding the census, ABS would consult with the Australian public and would only proceed with any new proposal if it was acceptable to the Australian community, Mr. Williams said. "But this will not involve the retention of names and addresses by the ABS," he added.

"The ABS will continue its practice of destroying census records containing names and addresses following census processing."