Data Suppression

Bringing back the mandatory long-form census is a win for the north

Getting the Small Things Right: How data suppression and provincial reporting distort Northern realities

June 2, 2016 | James Cuddy

Five years ago Statistics Canada replaced the mandatory long-form census with the voluntary National Household Survey (NHS.) The change resulted in a survey that lacked the ability to provide high quality socioeconomic data that many researchers, analysts, planners and policy makers relied on to make informed decisions. In the absence of the mandatory census it was argued that Northern Ontario was left in the dark.

This briefing note offers up suggestions on how to remedy the region’s data draught. First the briefing note assesses how the National Household Survey created a gap in data availability in Northern Ontario and why bringing back the mandatory long-form census is so important. Secondly the briefing note identifies another data gap which is the set of regional economic accounts for Northern Ontario. Read on to find out what data suppression means to Northern Ontario.


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