1370.0 - Measures of Australia's Progress, 2010  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/09/2010   
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Children without an employed parent

Children aged under 15 years, living in a single or multi-family household, where no parent is employed. Other relatives or non-related individuals living in the household may be employed.


The term community refers to an inter-connected group of people who can influence one another's wellbeing. Notwithstanding the many possible connections between people that may be used to define communities (see below), there is an important sense that the wellbeing of community members is influenced by their connections to others. Like a family, a community may be an important source of support and care for individuals, and individuals can gain a sense of identity and security from belonging to a community.

Communities are commonly thought of as being groups of people living within particular geographic areas. There are other connections between people which are not geographically based but which indicate the existence of communities. These include connections relating to shared values, traditions and lifestyles. Thus, people with a shared culture or heritage such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people belonging to religious groups, or groups of people born in particular countries who maintain associations with each other, are often viewed as belonging to a community. Communities may also be defined in terms of people with a shared set of interests or activities, for example school communities' or 'arts communities'. Thus communities may be composed of diverse groups with competing interests and rights; but they can also be reasonably homogeneous.

Couple family

A family based on two persons who are in a registered or de facto marriage and who are usually resident in the same household. The family may include any number of dependent children, non-dependent children and other related or unrelated individuals. It is not necessary for a parent-child relationship to be formed, thus a couple family can consist of a couple without children present in the household.

Couple family with dependent children

One family household consisting of a couple with at least one dependent child. The household may also include non-dependent children, other relatives and unrelated individuals.

Dependent child

A person aged under 15 years, or a dependent student.

Dependent student

A full-time student aged 15-24 years, living in the same usual residence as his or her natural, step, foster or adoptive parent.

Drug-induced deaths

Any death directly caused by an acute episode of poisoning or toxicity to drugs, including deaths from accidental overdoses, suicide and assault, and any death from an acute condition caused by habitual drug use. The term 'drug' refers to substances classified as drugs that may be used for medicinal or therapeutic purposes and those that produce a psychoactive effect excluding alcohol, tobacco and volatile solvents (e.g. petrol). Drug-induced causes exclude accidents, homicides and other causes indirectly related to drug use. Also excluded are newborn deaths associated with mother's drug use. See Causes of Death, Australia, 2008, Appendix 2 - Tabulation of Selected Causes of Death for the full list of ICD-10 codes included in this definition of Drug Induced Deaths.


Two or more people, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering, and who are usually resident in the same household. The basis of a family is formed by identifying the presence of a couple relationship, lone parent-child relationship or other blood relationship. Some households will, therefore, contain more than one family.


The ABS uses the cultural definition of homelessness. This definition identifies shared community standards about the minimum housing that people have the right to expect, in order to live according to the conventions and expectations in Australia. The minimum community standard is a small rental flat with a bedroom, living room, kitchen, bathroom and an element of security of tenure. The definition identifies those groups that fall below the minimum community standard. These groups include rough sleepers (living on the streets, in deserted buildings, improvised dwellings, in parks, etc), people in emergency accommodation/youth refuges/hostels, people staying temporarily with friends or relatives and people residing in boarding houses.


One or more persons usually resident in the same private dwelling.

Humanitarian program

The Humanitarian program is a component of Australia's immigration program. It has two important functions:

  • It fulfils our international obligations by offering protection to people already in Australia who are found to be refugees according to the Refugees Convention (known as the onshore protection/asylum component)
  • It expresses our commitment to refugee protection by going beyond these obligations and offering resettlement to people overseas for whom this is the most appropriate option (known as the offshore resettlement component).
    For further information visit the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website.


    Persons who identify themselves as being of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander origin.

    Intact family

    A couple family containing at least one child aged 0-17 years who is the natural or adopted child of both members of the couple, and no child aged 0-17 years who is the step child of either member of the couple. Intact families may also include other children who are not the natural or adopted children or either parent, such as foster children.

    Lone parent

    A person who has no spouse or partner usually resident in the household but who forms a parent-child relationship with at least one child usually resident in the household.


    A person who was not born in Australia, arrived in Australia after 1980, was aged 18 years and over on arrival and had obtained permanent Australian resident status.

    One parent family with dependent children

    A household comprising a lone parent with at least one dependent child. The household may also include non-dependent children, other relatives and unrelated individuals.

    Primary carer

    A person who is the largest provider of informal assistance, in terms of help or supervision, to a person with one or more disabilities. The assistance has to be ongoing, or likely to be ongoing, for at least six months and be provided for one or more core activities (communication, mobility and self care). In the Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers, primary carers only include persons aged 15 years and over for whom a personal interview was conducted. Persons aged 15-17 years were only interviewed personally if parental permission was granted.

    Reciprocal relationship

    A relationship where there is a general expectation that assistance or support given by one party may be returned at some time in the future by the other.

    Skilled migration

    The Skilled migration program is a component of Australia's immigration program. The Skill Stream of Australia's Migration Program is specifically designed to target migrants who have skills or outstanding abilities that will contribute to the Australian economy. There are four main categories of skilled migrants: general skilled migration, employer nomination, business skills migration and, distinguished talent. For further information visit the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website.

    Social capital

    Social capital consists of the networks and the shared norms, values and understandings that facilitate cooperation within and among groups. It generally contributes to community strength and is accumulated when people interact with one another, whether informally (for example, with family and friends) or more formally (for example, in groups and organisations in the wider community) (OECD 2001b).

    Social cohesion

    Social cohesion can be understood as the bonds and relationships people have with their family, friends and the wider community. Day to day interactions between people in a community build trust and reciprocity and contribute to cohesion (Berger-Schmitt and Noll 2000).

    Social exclusion

    Social exclusion is a form of social disadvantage encompassing economic and non-economic factors. Excluded individuals and groups are separated from institutions and wider society, and consequently from both rights and duties (Jary and Jary 2000).

    Social networks

    A set of people who have ties between them or some pattern of interaction. Indicators that shed light on aspects of social networks include people's ability to access support, their participation in groups associated with sport and religious activities, and in paid and voluntary work.


    Any death due to intentional self-harm. In order to classify a death as suicide (intentional self-harm) the ICD-10 interpretation used by the ABS requires that specific documentation from a medical or legal authority be available regarding both the self-inflicted nature and suicidal intent of the incident. The International Classification of Diseases 10th Revision (ICD-10) codes for suicide are X60-X84 and Y870.

    Support period

    A discrete period of time in which a person receives ongoing support from a specialist homelessness agency.


    Someone who willingly gives unpaid help, in the form of time, service or skills, to or through an organisation or group. The reimbursement of expenses in full or part (e.g. token payments) or small gifts (e.g. sports club T-shirts or caps) are not regarded as payment of salary, and people who received these are still included as voluntary workers. However, people who received payment in kind for the work they did (e.g. receiving farm produce as payment for work done on a farm, rather than cash) are not included as volunteers. The Voluntary Work Survey asked about voluntary work done in the 12 months prior to interview, excluding voluntary work done overseas.

    For the 2006 voluntary work collection, in consultation with the peak body for volunteer organisations, the 'willingly undertaken' part of the definition was refined by the exclusion of an involvement with an organisation that, while recognised as unpaid community work, was not strictly voluntary or would not normally be seen as voluntary work: the Work for the Dole Program or Community Work under Mutual Obligation; work experience/part of an unpaid work trial; work under a Community Service Order; a student placement; or emergency work during an industrial dispute.

  • Family community and social cohesion references

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