HC Deb 15 March 1999 vol 327 cc500-1W
Mr. Gordon Prentice

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received calling for the inclusion of additional categories in the 2001 census to identify(a) race and (b) ethnic origin. [74630]

Ms Hewitt

I have been asked to reply.

The Office for National Statistics, along with the other two UK Census Offices, has conducted a lengthy programme of consultation with all user communities on their requirements for questions to be considered in the 2001 Census. This consultation process culminated in the submission by users of business cases setting out the uses and values of Census information for each particular topic. Ministers have now considered the case for a revised ethnic group question in the 2001 Census, and the Government's proposals were published in a White Paper on 4 March [Cm 4253].

During the period of consultation, a total of 154 representations calling for the inclusion of additional categories in the 2001 Census to identify ethnic origin have been received as follows: 108 from MPs and 31 from MEPs, on behalf of the British Sikh Federation, the Kashmiri Workers Association, the Federation of Irish Societies, Cornwall 2000, Cornish Solidarity and 15 from individual members of the public.