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Focus groups are not a representative sample; focus group participants are self-selecting. They belong to a specific sub-population of people who have links to the community organisations and contacts involved in the focus group research in each location. Participation was open to people who identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, and as such a bias toward consistent identification is possible in the participants’ views. The findings generated by the focus groups are valuable in informing discussion on identification behaviours, but the findings are not representative of the views of any one group.
The views expressed in the focus groups are summarised below without preference. Quantifiers such as ‘some’, ‘most’, or ‘a few’ have been avoided in acknowledgement of the fact that the number of focus group participants expressing a particular view is not necessarily representative of the extent to which that view is held in the wider population. Where views or discussion topics are presented here, they reflect the views of a number of participants, generally across multiple focus group sessions. This paper has been careful to avoid any bias toward the opinions of individual participants.
The ABS would like to thank the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who participated in the focus groups. Their knowledge provides valuable insight into the environment in which data is collected and the experiences of clients and stakeholders in data collection contexts. Their contributions to this research form part of an essential dialogue toward a greater shared understanding in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander policy space.