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Information on the 2018 Census


Information on the 2018 Census

by Tim George

Every five years, New Zealand households take part in a national census. This year’s census takes place on Tuesday, 6 March.

Why is it important to take part in the census, you say?

The census provides the information that government department and agencies will depend on to make decisions that will affect all New Zealanders. That includes funding for schools, hospitals, roads and the entire infrastructure that keeps this little country moving. For disabled people specifically, completing the census is extremely important in determining the services and funding that is available.

When you look at the big picture, the census has a massive impact on all our lives. So it is very important that as many people as possible take part. The information you provide is confidential and individual answers will not be shared, so make sure to encourage your whānau to take part.

This year’s census is going to be a little different from the past. Instead of a census worker at your door, you and the members of your household can complete the census online, at

From 23 February, people will receive a unique access code in the mail. This code is very important – you will need it in order to access the census.

If you require additional support to fill out the census, here is a link to the Community support page with resources for people who may need extra help. There you can find:

  • An example of the access code letter people will start receiving from 23 February
  • A support guide for completing the census
  • An easy read version of the census access code letter
  • A large print version of the census access code letter
  • 8 Posters advertising where people over 50 can go to get help to complete the census online at a local SeniorNet centre
  • a video in NZ Sign Language If you do not have access to the internet, or just prefer a paper form, you can call 0800 CENSUS (0800 236 787), to request paper forms. Or you can request this change online, at this link. Your forms will arrive via post, along with an envelope to send in the completed forms.If you require any other support or advice, call 0800 CENSUS (0800 236 787). The contact staff can speak English, Te Reo Māori, Tongan, Samoan, Mandarin, Hindi, Cantonese, and Korean.
  • For more information on how to complete the census, follow this link:
  • The online census is available in English or Te Reo Māori, and bilingual forms are available if you prefer paper forms – you can request a bilingual form pack when you order your paper forms.
  • For people who are blind or have vision impairment, the online census forms have been designed to work with screen readers and assisted technology. If people are unable to complete the census by themselves, or with the support of a family member, friend or support worker, then census field teams will follow up after census day to support them in completing the census.

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