I have recently been contacted by older people worried they will be fined £1,000 and are unable to speak to someone to tell them the form was sent weeks ago.
With Census Day weeks ago on 27 March some people are now receiving reminders telling them they haven’t returned their form and face a £1,000 form if they don’t hurry up and return the form.
Unfortunately, in a number of instances, the form has already been returned and these reminders are causing serious distress amongst some recipients fearful of the high fine. This is compounded by the fact that when people ring the Census Helpline they cannot speak to anyone as they face a recorded message.
Government must now act without delay and introduce a better approach. They should withdraw the reminders which have caused real concern, replacing them with a polite note and they must also ensure people can speak to someone about the issue.