Census 2021 - Supporting families

Census 2021 will be taking place on Sunday 21 March 2021 for England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and the families you support will be asked to participate.  All households in the UK will receive a code through the post to enable them to participate in the census and a link to participate online. These will be delivered from Wednesday 3 March 2021 onwards.  You must complete the census by law or you could be fined up to £1,000.

It's important to be able to explain what the Census is, why it's taken and how to participate. It may feel strange or invasive for family members, so do take time to explain that we will all be asked to participate.  You could offer to complete their census with them, you will require their code to do so.  Census offers some help in explaining this to those you are helping.   As the Census is a legal obligation, you will be permitted under Covid-19 restrictions to provide direct support to the family, however, please ensure you do so safely - for you and for the family.  

The family can also access a language helpline which may be useful for those of you supporting adults with low or no literacy: 

Callers to the free language helpline number, 0800 587 2021, which will be open to Saturday 26 June 2021 and they will be able to:

Order a support booklet in one of the common languages.

  • This will be in paper format
  • It will provide support for completing a paper questionnaire

Complete the census questionnaire through telephone capture in one of the supported languages.

  • Be aware that this will take more time
  • Be aware that callers will be asked to share information about their household (including dates of birth, qualifications and employment details for your household members)
  • Be aware that this can be done using the interpretation service, if an interpreter is available

Ask questions in one of the supported languages.

  • Be aware that this will be a three way conversation with a Contact Centre operator, the caller, and an interpreter
  • Be aware that time and date will depend on the interpreter’s availability

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