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One fifth of Orkney census responses overdue

The Scottish Government has urged all households who have not yet completed their census form to do so immediately, as it reveals local response rates nationwide.

While Orkney has a relatively high return rate for the census, 20 per cent of households are yet to complete their form either online or on paper.

The census, which aims to create a picture of Scotland’s population in the year 2022, was due to be returned on or before March 20.

With the census due to close on May 1, every household across Scotland is required to complete their form. Failure to return your census form could result in prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.

Issuing a renewed call for census returns this Monday, Angus Robertson, cabinet secretary for the constitution, external affairs and culture said: “I want to thank the two million households who have already completed the census and met their legal responsibility. But as we enter the final week many returns remain outstanding.

“For the census to be effective in delivering its many benefits for future public services, it is vital that we secure a higher response rate and one that reflects the diversity of our communities.

“Today we are calling on all of our communities and organisations to come together and to redouble their efforts to encourage participation. It’s absolutely essential that every householder in Scotland completes the census.”

National Records of Scotland chief executive Paul Lowe added: “Every single household return is vital to the overall success of the census.

“Census data is vital in informing decisions about services that affect us all. We have put in place a number of additional interventions to support those who have yet to complete a return. This includes a range of additional household reminders. Our field team have already undertaken more than 750,000 household visits to support those who have not completed, and are continuing to make these visits.

“Help and support to complete your census is available on our website census.gov.scot or via our free helpline 0800 030 8308. Paper forms are still available on request for those who need them.”