The Australian Bureau of Statistics has released information about Indigenous status as revealed through the last Census. The information is based on the count of persons (place of usual residence) and shows the number of persons identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander in a given area. The information is derived from a specific question on the Census form that asks about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin of respondents.
Quality and Applicability
Place of usual residence counts are used by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in all its standard data sets e.g. Basic Community Profile, Expanded Community Profile, Indigenous Profile and QuickStats.
Information about Indigenous status is useful because it tells us about the numbers of those identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander in our communities. It is, however, widely agreed that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are significantly undercounted on surveys like the Census due to a range of reasons including not wishing to disclose Indigenous status. The count of persons identifying as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander must therefore be interpreted with caution.
Information about Indigenous status is available for local government areas, statistical local areas, suburbs, and collector districts – by sex and age (five-year age groups).
Collector districts are the smallest spatial units under the Australian Standard Geographical Classification system used by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. Collector districts enable the collection and dissemination of Census data. Statistical local areas fit into the boundaries of incorporated bodies of local government (i.e. local government areas) when aggregated.
Information about Indigenous status refers to 8 August 2006, the most recent Census.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics progressively released all standard data sets based on the 2006 Census during 2007.
Information about Indigenous status is contained in the Basic Community Profile Cat. No. 2001.0 2006 Table B07. Select the 'Community Profiles' function to search for an area by name then open its Basic Community Profile. More comprehensive data can be found in the Indigenous Profile Cat. No. 2002.0. Select the 'Community Profiles' function to search for an area by name then open its Indigenous Profile.
Cost and Format
Australian Bureau of Statistics data sets are downloadable free of charge in excel spreadsheet format.
Additional Data Source(s)
Information about Indigenous status based on the last Census is available through the Victorian Local Governance Association online library of social statistics.