2016 Canada Census

Level 2

I wonder who lives in Canada?

I wonder who lives in Canada?

What is the census?

The census is information about who lives in Canada.
The information is gathered by Statistics Canada.

What do I have to do?

You will get an envelope in the mail.
Follow the directions in the envelope.
You can answer the census questions in two ways:

  1. You can fill in the form online.
  2. You can ask for a paper form.

Resources for Teachers

Get more information

Who must answer the census questions?

  • Canadian citizens
  • landed immigrants
  • refugee claimants
  • people with a work permit
  • people with a study permit

How long will it take to answer the questions?

The short form takes about 10 minutes.

The long form takes about 30 minutes.

How is the information used?

The information helps government make good decisions.

May 10 is census day

May 10 is census day

What is census day?

May 10 is census day.

All answers to the questions must be true on May 10.

The census is a picture of Canada on May 10.

What happens if I don’t answer the questions?

What happens if I am out of the country?

You will not have to fill in the form.

What happens if I am late?

An official will come to your home. The official will help you fill in the form.

What happens if I don’t answer the questions?

You could get a fine of $500 or 3 months in jail.

Where can I get help?

Contact the Census Help Line

Get more information at www.census.gc.ca

Census Help Line

You can get help in 22 languages and English and French.

The census is translated in 11 non-official languages, 11 Aboriginal dialects and sign language (ASL and FSL).

Call the Census Help Line

Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Phone toll-free 1-855-700-2016

TTY (for people who are deaf) 1-866-753-7083.

Call the Census Help Line if you:

  • did not receive a census questionaire
  • need help answering the questions
  • want more information about the 2016 Census
  • would like to complete an individual questionnaire
  • would like to request a secure access code
  • would like to get the census questions in another language.


  • In 2011, 50% answered the questions online.
  • The 2016 goal is for 65 percent to answer the questions online.
  • In 2011, 98% answered the questions online and on paper.


Story adapted from The Vancouver Sun and Statistics Canada by Patty Bossort