Why the census is especially important for P.E.I.

·1 min read
Governments use the census to create policy, to make decisions about places that may need new roads, health services or schools.  (Chris Helgren/Reuters - image credit)
Governments use the census to create policy, to make decisions about places that may need new roads, health services or schools. (Chris Helgren/Reuters - image credit)

May 11 was census day in Canada, and Canada's chief statistician Anil Arora says Prince Edward Islanders may want to pay particular attention to getting their forms filled out.

"The census is designed, in a sense, for small areas," said Arora.

"The census is actually the one vehicle that at a point of time goes to very small geographies. You get right down to the neighbourhood level of what's going on."

Governments use the census to create policy, to make decisions about places that may need new roads, health services or schools. It is also used to calculate transfer payments from the federal government to the provinces, such as equalization and health transfers.

It is important that everyone fill out their census forms, says Anil Arora.
It is important that everyone fill out their census forms, says Anil Arora.(CBC)

Because the census gets down to small details it can tell us, for example, that while the population of Canada has aged slightly since 2016, the median age on P.E.I. has dropped a full year.

It can also tell us that median age has dropped largely because of immigration.

"You now see the impact that immigration is having in P.E.I.," said Arora.

"For example, where do immigrants go? Are they going to mainly the urban areas, are they going to more rural areas? What are the education and skills that immigrants are bringing to P.E.I.?"

Arora said there is still time for Islanders to fill out their census forms if they have not yet.

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