Tuesday, 4 June 2013

1921 Census of Canada Count-up: Day 3

This is Day 3 since the 1921 census officially passed into the custody of Library and Archives Canada.

I went to 395 Wellington Street on Monday to obtain access. The person at the genealogy desk told me she was unaware of the status of the census. She was unable to contact a manager by phone. A helpful person at the orientation desk on the second floor was unaware of the census, said she would investigate and came to find me in the 5th floor cafeteria to tell me information would be forthcoming later in the day. That did not happen.

Later I was told the release would basically be that the census would be available on the Internet within the next few weeks.

LAC should know that the governing legislation is BILL S-13, An Act to amend the Statistics Act, which provides that

The information contained in the returns of any census of population taken between 1910 and 2003 may, starting ninety-two years after the census is taken, be examined by (a) a person wishing to conduct genealogical research on their own behalf or, where authorized by another person, on behalf of that other person, if the person who will conduct the research signs an undertaking in the form prescribed by regulation; 
There is a statutory obligations to make the census available. It is not qualified to to be at the administrative convenience of Library and Archives Canada. It is to be available at a specified time. LAC should be abiding by the law of the land? Why does it not now have in place the procedures required? There was no surprise as to when the census was becoming available to LAC, nor that it would be available in electronic form.


Anonymous said...

Why is it that the US have already digitalized their 1940 census and those of us wanting to see a Canadian one that was taken 20 years before that still have to wait. I have some theories but sadly none that are printable.

Cecil Turcotte said...

The sample Schedule B from the 1921 Canadian Census is available online, but not from LAC.
Likewise with Enumerator Instructions.
Since the census has been open to 'qualified researchers' for years, it is clear that LAC needs to correct its approach to gain access as an 'approved researcher' to eliminate these delays in releasing data.
I can see multiple interests for the genealogist within the CCRI Canadian Century Research Infrastructure) work.

Helen said...

FYI I do not believe that particular version of the Bill was ever passed. The full Statistics Act, as amended may be found on http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/S-19/FullText.html and http://www.statcan.gc.ca/about-apercu/act-loi-eng.htm. See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statistics_Act for overview.