From left: Keevan Gipson, Acting TEATT Minister Omar Ottley, Veronica Jansen-Webster, Ginonne Severina and Jaghaira Lioe-A-Tjam.
PHILIPSBURG–The Population Census 2022 is set to start soon and Acting Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication (TEATT) Omar Ottley urges the populace to cooperate.
The population census takes place every 10 years. The last census in St. Maarten was in 2011. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this exercise was postponed in 2021. St. Maarten joins at least 13 other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean in executing the population census in 2022.
The Department of Statistics is responsible for the successful execution of the population census. Two groups of enumerators have undergone an extensive training programme and by the end of September, approximately 100 enumerators will be dispatched country-wide to interview every single person in every household in St. Maarten. Ottley highlighted the census on Wednesday during the live Council of Ministers press briefing.
He said the questionnaire is quite extensive, as the government of St. Maarten tries to capture as much data as possible to answer the following questions: Who are we? How many are we? Where do we live? How do we live?
The data gathered is anonymous and confidential and no individual data will be published. Regardless of the nationality, legal status or economic situation, everyone will be counted. Aggregate data will be analysed and reports will be generated that will give government the information needed by all ministries to develop policies based on actual facts from communities.
Data gathered will be analysed and made available to the community as well via the website of the Department of Statistics so that people can see the results of the census.
From the population census, information will be gathered on population density, demographics of the population, immigration, school participation rate, dropout rate, employment rate, health conditions of the population, estimate of household expenses, the household income, transportation and the quality of housing in neighbourhoods.
Ottley urged everyone to cooperate with the enumerators “as they come to your doors with their tablets to ask the questions. No information gathered in the census will be shared with other departments in accordance with the statistical ordinance and the ordinance on population counts,” he said.