Government Departments: Ethnic Groups:Written question - HL11000

Asked on: 24 October 2018
Cabinet Office
Government Departments: Ethnic Groups
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Buscombe on 31 July (HL9752) and their response to the report by the Women and Equalities Committee, Race Disparity Audit, published by that Committee on 11 September, when they will adopt the same categories as are used in the Census as the minimum standard for data collection on ethnicity across Government departments; and whether this will include specific categories for Gypsies and Irish Travellers.
Answered by: Lord Young of Cookham
Answered on: 01 November 2018

The ethnicity data published on the Ethnicity Facts and Figures website includes data from the Census, published official statistics, numerous Government surveys and Departments’ own administrative records.

Currently, the website has 52 measures (web pages) that present data using the detailed classification of ethnicity developed for the 2011 Census, which includes Irish Traveller and Gypsy/Roma Travellers (GRT). However, figures for the GRT ethnic group in some of these measures were suppressed for reasons of confidentiality protection and/or because the numbers were too small to enable robust estimates to be produced.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is responsible for the design of the Census, including advising Parliament on the format of a question about ethnicity.

ONS also has a leadership role across the Government Statistical Service, to encourage those conducting household surveys to use survey questions and output classifications that are harmonised with the Census approach, and across government more generally in relation to the use of harmonised approaches (to data collection) on administrative systems

The Cabinet Office is working with the ONS on how to support the widespread adoption of the detailed ethnicity classification that will be used in the 2021 Census

The Cabinet Office's Race Disparity Unit is also taking steps to enhance the degree of harmonisation in ethnicity data presented on the Ethnicity Facts and Figures website, for example by requesting new analyses to match the high level groups that represent the current harmonised ethnicity standard.

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