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Emirates Western Force Flanker Matt Hodgson has joined with his Indigenous Wallabies teammates to encourage Western Australians to complete the 2011 Census on 9 August.
Hodgson, along with Kurtley Beale, Anthony and Saia Fainga'a and Assistant Coach Jim Williams are encouraging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to make sure they complete the Census on Tuesday, 9 August 2011.
Hodgson said it was particularly important for Indigenous people to identify as Indigenous on their Census form so that funding for services across health, education and sports facilities, just to name a few, can be allocated appropriately.
"I'm really proud of my Indigenous heritage and I'm encouraging other young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to identify this on their Census form,” said Hodgson.
"We need to capture an accurate number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in Australia.
"If Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people don't answer this question they won’t be included in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander count.
“This may affect the allocation of funds for services such as sporting facilities, education, housing and health clinics.”
The Australian Bureau of Statistics conducts the nationwide Census every five years to ensure an accurately count the number of people in Australia, their key characteristics, and the dwellings in which they live is understood.
During the Census every household and person in the country is required to answer specific questions on a paper form, which is delivered, or through eCensus online.
The Census is crucial to communities, private institutions and all levels of government when planning infrastructure, community services and facilities.
Hodgson said that self-identifying on the Census form helps the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) accurately capture the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in Australia on Census night and all information collected is completely private and protected by law.
"Help shape your own future and that of your family by making sure you're counted in the Census,” said Hodgson.
More information is available online at www.abs.gov.au/census