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Province of British Columbia
NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
2023CITZ0014-000916
June 14, 2023
Ministry of Citizens' Services
New survey will help fill gaps in government services

VICTORIA – Everyone living in B.C. is encouraged to take the BC Demographic Survey to help identify systemic racism in government services.

The survey is online and available in 15 languages at: https://antiracism.gov.bc.ca/bcdemographicsurvey

People without access to a computer or smartphone can take the survey by calling toll-free: 1 833 376-2452

“We have heard from many Indigenous Peoples and racialized groups that they are being left behind because government services weren’t designed with them in mind, which is why we are continuing the work to create a more equitable province,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “The BC Demographic Survey is our next step in confronting systemic biases and advancing racial equity in B.C. If you’re a B.C. resident, I invite you to participate in the survey to help us build a province that works for everyone.”

The information collected through the BC Demographic Survey will help the B.C. government deliver stronger, more accessible, and more inclusive programs and services for everyone. The survey was created through engagement with Indigenous, Black and other racialized communities. It includes questions related to race, ethnicity, ancestry and other areas of identity.

“Everyone deserves equitable access to the supports they need,” said Niki Sharma, Attorney General. “We need to understand how systemic racism shows up in government services through data collection. The BC Demographic Survey will help us identify data gaps so that we can improve access to government programs and services for everyone.”

The BC Demographic Survey is being conducted by BC Stats, the Province’s trusted source of statistics about B.C.’s people and economy. Personal identifiers will be removed when survey responses are combined with information about government programs and services.

This will enable anti-racism research on the priorities brought forward by Indigenous Peoples and the Anti-Racism Data Committee. Those research priorities were released May 29, 2023.

“We all need fair and impartial opportunities to thrive,” said Mable Elmore, Parliamentary Secretary for Anti-Racism Initiatives. “But many people experience obstacles that make getting ahead more challenging. By participating in the BC Demographic Survey, we can better understand where people are experiencing barriers when accessing public services so we can address them and build a better B.C. for everyone.”

While the survey is voluntary, everyone, regardless of ethnicity, is encouraged to take it. The more people who complete the survey, the better and more accurate the data to identify, then eliminate, systemic racism in B.C. government services.

The Province has developed a digital-awareness campaign that alters the B.C. logo to show how gaps in services can be filled by participating in the survey.  

Ongoing community involvement is at the core of the Anti-Racism Data Act. The Province is also providing grants to community organizations to raise awareness of the survey within their networks. Interested community organizations can email: arda.engagement@gov.bc.ca

The survey is open until Sept. 29, 2023, and is part of the Province’s cross-government work to collaborate with Indigenous Peoples and racialized communities to dismantle systemic racism and build a better, more inclusive province.

Quotes:

June Francis, chair, Anti-Racism Data Committee –

“It is urgent that all communities, families and individuals fill out the BC Demographic Survey. The results will provide much-needed information to guide government in taking the actions necessary to eliminate racism in its services and fostering a B.C. where we all thrive.”

Kasari Govender, B.C.s human rights commissioner –

"This year’s BC Demographic Survey is the first to be administered under the Anti-Racism Data Act. The act – and the collection of data on the impacts of racism – flows from ‘the grandmother perspective’ framework on disaggregated data collection that my office has called for. Demographic data can assist the provincial government to identify and eliminate racial inequities in service delivery systems. I encourage everyone interested in ensuring our public services are equitable to engage with this new survey and make your voices heard."

Learn More:

To fill out the BC Demographic Survey, visit: www.antiracism.gov.bc.ca/bcdemographicsurvey

People needing assistance to fill out the survey can call toll-free at 1 833 376-2452 Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Pacific time) and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Pacific time). Telephone assistance is not available on Sundays or statutory holidays.

To learn more about the Anti-Racism Data Act and actions to date, visit: https://antiracism.gov.bc.ca/

To know more about the anti-racism research priorities visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2023CITZ0012-000807

 
Contact:
 
Ministry of Citizens’ Services
Media Relations
778 974-5809
 

 
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: news.gov.bc.ca/connect