Census collectors start their house-to-house work in Lambeth today contacting householders who have not returned their 2011 census forms.
More than 200 collectors will be knocking on doors and will target households who have still not completed and returned their census questionnaires.
Derek Prior, census area manager for the Office of National Statistics, said: “Thank you to everyone in Lambeth who has taken the time and trouble to fill in their census form. Initial response rates are promising, but there is still a long way to go and we would urge anyone who hasn’t completed their form to do so. From Stockwell to Streatham, this borough has many distinct and vibrant communities. We want those communities to be recognised and to get the services they need. Services like schools, social care and youth services are shaped by census data, but if you do not complete your form, you won’t be counted, and your communities will miss out.”
So far, nearly three quarters of households have completed and returned their forms nationally.
It is absolutely vital that everyone who lives in Lambeth completes and returns their census form. The population data from it is used by Government to decide how to allocate funding to communities for important local services like schools, hospitals, healthcare and social care. If people do not fill in their forms, their communities will miss out.
Census collectors’ main role is to ensure questionnaires are completed and returned. They have all received online and classroom training to assist them with their role.
Collectors’ duties also include:
- clarifying census instructions and assist in form-filling where necessary
- answering people’s census queries
- pointing out the benefits for the local community of filling in the census form
- ensuring confidentiality and security of census information at all times
- reminding people filling in the form is a legal requirement
- reporting where a refusal is encountered
- obtaining a completed census form.
All 2011 Census field staff wear photo identification badges and carry other visibly branded items. Collectors will never ask anyone for bank account details.
If householders are at all unsure about the identity of anyone claiming to be from the census, they should ask to see their proof of identity before answering any questions and if they still have concerns should contact the census helpline on 0300 0201 101 in England or the Welsh helpline 0300 0201130.