Australian Marriage Equality has today called on same-sex couples to make sure they record their relationships in this year’s Australian Census. Same-sex couples who have married overseas can also record their marital status.

“This is a really important opportunity to make sure LGBTIQ Australian couples are recognised and counted”, said Shirleene Robinson, National Spokesperson, Australian Marriage Equality.

From 2011, as a result of lobbying by Australian Marriage Equality, same-sex couples have been able to record themselves as married in addition to de-facto.  In 2011, 33,714 couples noted they were in a same-sex relationships.  

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is now releasing data on the numbers of same-sex partners and couples who are described on the Census form as husband or wife, rather than as de-facto partner.

“For more than a decade, Australian Marriage Equality has been advocating to ensure every Australian has the right to marry the person they love.

“The changes in recording information by the ABS is an important step in ensuring every Australian relationship is recognised as equal”, Shirleene Robinson said.

“We ask that all same-sex couples, especially those married overseas, accurately reflect their relationship on Census night next Tuesday. It’s important that the Government understands the extent of same-sex relationships across Australia”, Shirleene Robinson said.

Media: Clint McGilvray 0413 285 186

Notes on the Census:

The next Australian Census will be held on Tuesday 9 August 2016.

From 1 August, most households will receive a letter from the ABS with a unique Census Login and instructions on how to complete the Census online. There will also be instructions for those who require a paper form.

For those LGBTIQ people who are concerned about privacy, the Australian Bureau of Statistics states that after data collection and processing, the ABS will remove names and addresses from other personal and household information and will store them separately and securely. Names and addresses will be destroyed four years after collection in August 2020.

People in same-sex relationships can record this on questions 5 and 6 on the paper household form, questions 4 and 5 online household form, questions 7 and 8 paper personal form and online personal form.