Hey there people.
I live in the UK myself (Wiltshire), so I'm aware of the whole census thing. I think they all need to be filled in and returned by 27th March. Mine
came through the letterbox 2 days ago.
The census comes out every 10 years and is a way to determine the demographics (sorry about the long word) of the country. It's a population count
with a few added questions to determine the condition of the country and its population economically, socially, religiously, geographically,
I remember doing the last one in 2001, and the thing is, looking at this new census.....I don't remember being asked HALF the questions they are
asking this time around! It seems quite intrusive in alot of ways, and reminds me very much of all the DSS forms I had to fill in when applying for
Unemployment benefit (Jobseekers Allowance) and Housing Benefit many many years ago.
I would like to know where I stand legally in regards to what questions I HAVE to answer and what questions I can refuse to answer, as it seems
'someone somewhere' is trolling for more information about me than they are allowed to. So, I want to know how much of my response is legally
The other thing that bothers me is the whole 'privacy' fact about the census. In theory, the information contained on the census is not open to
public viewing for 100 years, thus guarding the rights to privacy of the individuals (as of this years, the public are now able to look at the census
taken in 1911 if they so wished). I am extremely wary of such 'guarantees' by the government, particularly when such information could be considered
extremely valuable to 'certain parties'. I'm sure many people would be eager to pay vast sums of money to be able to view the results of the census
and get a glimpse into the buying/spending habits of this country. Lets face it, what huge multinational company WOULDN'T want to know who is buying
what and how often. Information is valuable, and plenty of people would pay top dollar for info on you.
Where do you think 'cold callers' get so much information from? (I'm not suggesting from the census, but you'd be surprised how and where
information about you travels/comes from!)
Finally, I was more than a little concerned about the people franchised out to run the census by an article in the Daily Mail (yeah ok, I KNOW it's
the Daily Mail, but the basic facts of the story still stand!)
I apologise if I haven't sent the link properly. I'm afraid the finer points of terms and conditions still escape me. It's a link to an article in
the Daily Mail discussing security issues regarding the firm responsible for coordinating the census.