ERIC Number: ED190721
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Mar
Reference Count: 0
1981 Census: Why the Ethnic Question Is Vital. A Discussion Document.
Commission for Racial Equality, London (England).
A proposal in the White Paper on the 1981 census for Great Britain to include a question on "racial or ethnic group" has generated considerable concern. This document outlines the importance of including such a question in the census, explores major causes of the anxiety created by the issue, and recommends steps for dealing with this anxiety. Racial discrimination and special needs of minorities in the areas of housing, social services, and education are cited as factors necessitating accurate census information in terms of the ethnic composition of Great Britain's population. Ways that such information could support provisions of the 1976 Race Relations Act are discussed. The causes of anxiety provoked by the ethnicity question are identified as unwarranted fears of the census as a racist tool, a lack of understanding as to how ethnic data could contribute to the fight against racial discrimination and inequality, reluctance of West Indians to record their British born children as being of West Indian descent, and possible abuses of data or leaks in confidentiality. Recommendations are offered for remedying these concerns. (Author/GC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Commission for Racial Equality, London (England).
Identifiers: Great Britain; West Indians