More census collectors needed in south

Desperate organisers extend deadline

COLLETTE DEVLIN
Last updated 05:00 09/01/2013
Census 2013 Southland and Central Otago manager Lindsay Dow
ROBYN EDIE/Fairfax NZ

HELP WANTED: Census 2013 Southland and Central Otago manager Lindsay Dow is urging people to apply to become a census collector.

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Hundreds of census collectors are still needed in Southland and Central Otago, forcing organisers to extend the deadline for applications and stalling preparations in the region.

Desperate organisers have now extended Sunday's application deadline for one week in many parts of the region.

Census 2013 Southland and Central Otago manager Lindsay Dow said 279 census collectors were required for the biggest geographic region in the country.

It was estimated the population was about 132,315 with 54,823 occupied dwellings in the region, he said.

While the rest of the country was getting on with organising the census, the shortage of applicants in the region had left it in limbo.

"It's vital that we have people to do this important job," he said.

The previous census was in 2006 and those who used the census data were screaming out for the information they needed, he said.

He was hoping for an influx of applications now that the holiday period was over. "If that fails, I don't know what will happen." The census collector role involved part-time paid work from February 11 to March 24, and full training was provided.

Census collectors would deliver internet access codes and paper forms to every home in New Zealand from February 16.

Census collection operations manager Mick Alexander said trusted census collectors who know the area they worked in were critical to the success of the 2013 Census.

"Becoming a census collector is a great opportunity to help collect information that will be used to make decisions affecting New Zealand and its communities," he said.

People interested in applying for a census collector role should apply at census.govt.nz/jobs.

WHO CAN APPLY?
Everyone is welcome to apply providing they can read, write and speak English.

They may be a student or recent graduate, an employee or self-employed, a stay-at-home parent or care-giver, or retired. However, they must have access to a mobile phone, car and computer.

They must be able to work flexible hours and be able to attend various training sessions.

New Zealand citizens and permanent residents are given hiring preference.

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