The census is a count of all people in the country and how they live, and it is carried out once every 10 years. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) organises the census for England and Wales; Scotland and Northern Ireland have their own census on the same day organised by their own authorities, although in Scotland it has been postponed until March 2022 because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The ONS organises other surveys apart from the census. For example, it collects information about the size and structure of the population, unemployment rates, inflation and it was responsible for the weekly surveys providing information about the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the census is unique because it asks questions about every single person in the country, requiring them to answer the same questions on the same day. No other surveys provide as much detail about us and the society in which we live.
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