Census findings coming soon
TRADITIONAL churches have been seeing a decline in numbers and there has been an increase in persons who say they don’t belong to a church at all.
This observation was made by Director (Ag) Barbados Statistical Service, Aubrey Browne, who has 27 years experience in the field and who told the Barbados Advocate yesterday that these are some of the trends noticed over the past decade or so.
Browne, who did not have figures to hand said: “If you look at the census results for the religion aspect of it, you find that traditional churches over the years have been declining in numbers as the Pentecostal churches for example have been increasing in numbers. We notice that the population of persons who say they do not belong to any church, that is also increasing.”
Browne made the comments as he revealed that the BSS will be releasing the long-awaited 2010 Population and Housing Census to coincide with Caribbean Statistics Day on October 15 on the BSS website www.barstats.gov.bb.
In the past, difficulty in recruiting the targeted number of enumeration personnel, breakdowns in the designated printing press and a resource shortage as well as severe weather conditions during the census period were identified as some challenges that prevented the findings from being released on time.
The director’s comments came as the BSS joined the congregation at the New Dimensions Ministries, the Transformation Centre Barbarees Hill at a service to mark the start of a month of activities to celebrate the organisation’s 57th anniversary.
He said that Barbadians are unaware that the BSS generally compiles statistics from broad subject areas. “We are mandated by the Statistics Act Chapter 192 to collect, compile and publish statistical information on some broad areas. In this regard, we would have two main sources of compiling statistics, either conduct various censuses, or use administrative records.
“In terms of surveys we conduct a quarterly labour force survey, on the labour force statistics. An example of administrative records is, we use information from the customs department and this allows us to compile the trade statistics, export and import. Information from the Immigration Department to compile tourism statistics and from the registry, we get information on births and deaths which allows us to provide vital statistics.
“Included in that is an estimate of the population in between conducting population censuses every ten years. We will estimate the population using births and deaths and estimate for immigration, to estimate population growth.”
As the BSS celebrates its 57th anniversary, he said it is important to promote the use of statistics among the general public and also to recognise the work of staff.
The month of activities began with yesterday’s church service and will draw to a close on November 9 with an awards ceremony. (JH)