Hundreds put their hand up for census collector positions

COLLETTE DEVLIN
Last updated 14:44 23/01/2013
Southland Times photo
ROBYN EDIE/Fairfax NZ
Lindsay Dow the Southland/Central Otago area manager for the 2013 census.

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Census 2013 southern organisers have been overwhelmed with applications for collectors.

Southland and Central Otago manager Lindsay Dow said after The Southland Times reported the shortage of workers two weeks ago, more than 1200 applications flooded in for the 279 positions.

The shortage of census collectors in Southland and Central Otago forced desperate organisers to extend the deadline for applications and stalled preparations in the region.

Organisers were busy conducting interviews for the 247 collectors and 32 reserve collectors needed in the region, he said.

The census collector role involved part-time paid work from February 11 to March 24.

An unknown number of specialist collectors were also required in addition to collectors, he said.

Specialist collectors would organise the delivery and collection, on the night and morning after, of the March 5 census at dwellings such as hotels, motels and backpackers.

"As you can imagine places like Queenstown are of interest," he said.

Most of the applicants who responded were community-minded and more interested in coming to the aid of the community than the attraction of pay, he said.

"We were overwhelmed with the number of excellent candidates who applied and most were good community-minded people."

The estimated population of Southland and Central Otago was about 132,315, with about 54,823 occupied dwellings.

The last census was carried out in 2006. The 2011 census was cancelled because of the Canterbury earthquakes.

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- The Southland Times

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