Tuesday 20 October, 2020

 National census postponed until 2021

The Population and Housing Census for 2020 has been postponed until October 2021.

The event — conducted by the Economics and Statistics Office (ESO) — was initially scheduled for October 2020. The exact date in 2021 is yet to be set.

“The ESO is committed to quality surveys used for data collection, collation, evaluation, and publication of the reports to the Cayman Islands residents and prospective investors. It is with the impetus to maintaining ESO’s guiding principles the postponement of the census was taken,” said the ESO.

“During this unprecedented time of the COVID-19 global pandemic, we continue to value the safety of all residents, as well as the over 450 field staff who would have collected the data during the two months exercise.

ESO noted that the decision to postpone the census was due to the health risk to field workers and households, and the impact on families’ participation rates, among other COVID-19-related factors.

“A concern was that recruitment of field staff would have been challenging, as the older persons on whom we historically rely are less likely to work amidst the COVID-19 health risk. These persons also have historically higher response rates increasing their risk,” said the ESO.

It added: “While this risk is now deemed less than a month ago, as evidenced in the latest changes to regulations that were announced on 25 August 2020, the risk to COVID-19 in the Cayman Islands is not yet zero, and the threat remains at Level Two, Minimal Suppression.

“Likewise, logistical challenges in the recruitment and training of enumerators, field supervisors, and area coordinators in theory and practical application of the data capture methods were factored in the decision.”

Other regional countries with scheduled 2020 censuses which have postponed or are considering postponing due to the current pandemic environment, include St Lucia, Haiti, Aruba, The Bahamas, and Barbados. For further information, please call the Economics and Statistics Office hotline at 516-3329 or visit www.eso.ky.

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