Collection for the 2021 Census is now underway, so Statistics Canada is urging you to check your mailbox.

That’s where you’ll find your Census letter with instructions on how to complete the questionnaire online, on paper, or over the phone.

Stats Canada declared next Tuesday (May 11th) as Census Day, and notes by law, every household must complete one.

A new ‘Census of Population’ is mailed out to households every five years, and Stats Canada says it helps to paint a picture of the population. Farm operators must also complete a ‘Census of Agriculture’ questionnaire.

Census’ collect info on the demographic, social, and economic situation of people, as well as the dwellings they live in. According to Stats Canada, responses are vital for planning services that support employment, schools, public transportation, and hospitals.

While Campbell River mayor Andy Adams is encouraging locals to complete their Census, his message extends to all communities on the Island: “It just gives a snapshot of point-in-time of the demographics and age of our community, and how best to align the federal, provincial and local services to meet the needs of our population,” Adams tells Vista Radio.

Once you receive your letter with your 16-digit secure access code, you’re urged to visit census.gc.ca and click the ‘Start Questionnaire’ button.

With COVID-19 safety protocols top of mind, Campbell River’s city manager Deborah Sargent says completing the Census questionnaire online is the “best and fastest way to complete the census obligation.” She says you can also call the Census helpline to complete the Census questionnaire over the phone, or to request a paper questionnaire.