18 June 2013

1921 census of Canada count-up: day 16

This is Day 16 since the 1921 census officially passed into the custody of Library and Archives Canada. As stated on the LAC website,

Under the legislation, when 92 calendar years have elapsed since the taking of a census, those records will be opened for public use and transferred to Library and Archives Canada.
LAC has the census already digitized but not name indexed. Last Thursday, to add my voice to those looking for timely release and name indexing, I sent the following email to the Minister:

Dear Minister Moore:

I am an active genealogist, past president of a local Ottawa family
history society and author of a widely followed Canadian genealogy
blog. I'm writing to ask you to instruct Library and Archives Canada
to move rapidly on making the 1921 census available to Canadians
through a partnership agreement.

LAC is constrained in its ability to make that census, which has just
passed out of a 92 year privacy embargo, available to Canadians while
meeting other obligations and expectations.

LAC's budget situation is far from unique internationally; just last
year the US archival counterpart made their 1940 census available
through a partnership agreement which meant a name index to the census
was created in a matter of months. By that agreement the census became
available to all for a year at no cost to the government or the
public. Similar arrangements have been made in the UK.

Canadians now enjoy free access to our earlier censuses on the LAC
website because of similar arrangements which made them available,
with the name index, after three years. Those arrangements also made
the census available for free at numerous public access internet sites
such as public libraries across the country.

Short of an injection of new government funds, and I'm not looking for
increased taxes, the alternative seems to be no access for a
protracted period, a situation which currently is making nobody happy
and is likely contrary to law.

Please instruct LAC to move ahead with such a partnership arrangement.
It should be the proverbial "simple, quick, popular and cheap"
approach following a well accepted model for government/industry
partnership for censuses and other records of genealogical interest.


John D Reid

If you support prompt release, and name indexing under a partnership arrangement, please email the Minister at james.moore@parl.gc.ca


Helen said...

Apparently the 1921 Canadian Census has been ready for release since Wednesday, 12 June, but is being held back by the federal government. http://genealogycanada.blogspot.com/2013/06/breaking-news-1921-census-of-canada.html

Old Census Scribe said...

Maybe the government is going to give us all a nice prezzy on Canada Day?

I won't hold my breath.

Amado said...

This is cool!