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How many Bulgarians live in Australia according to Census 2021?

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Hasil sensus menunjukkna negara asal para migran

Hasil sensus menunjukkna negara asal para migran Source: SBS

Published 1 July 2022 at 2:54pm
By Krishani Dhanji, Filli Ladgman
Source: SBS

The 2021 Census paints an interesting picture of the modern Australia

Published 1 July 2022 at 2:54pm
By Krishani Dhanji, Filli Ladgman
Source: SBS

2021's Census results have been released, and it's showing some big changes in Australia's population.

From cultural background to religion, Australia is becoming increasingly diverse and its population has doubled in size over the last 50 years to 25.5 million.

Australia is becoming more diverse and less religious.

Those are the key finding from the latest Census, taken in 2021.

And the population has continued to grow rapidly, with more than 1 million new residents arriving in Australia over the last five years, the vast majority coming before the borders closed in 2020 due to the global COVID pandemic.

The 2021 Census paints an interesting picture of the modern Australia, and Theresa Dickenson from the Australian Bureau of Statistics says it shows how migration patterns are changing.

"The number of us who are first generation Australians, those born overseas, and second generation Australians, those with one or both parents born overseas which includes me, has grown and is over half the Australian population now."

The largest increase in the country of birth outside Australia was India, which is now also the third largest country of birth overall, after Australia and England, and followed by China and New Zealand.

Mandarin continues to be the most widely spoken language at home other than English, but Punjabi had the biggest increase in speakers since 2016.

Demographer at the Australian National University, Dr Liz Allen, says even those numbers could be underestimating the true nature of multiculturalism in Australia.

"While the majority of Australians are either themselves born overseas or their parents born overseas, that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are many more Australians who identify with what's called a hyphenated Australian status, say for example Asian-Australian, African-Australian and so on."

The proportion of generations has also swung towards Millennials - aged between 25 and 39 - who are now almost on par with the Baby Boomers, aged between 55 and 74.

Both groups each have more than 5.4 million people, but David Gruen says the Millennials are probably already ahead.

"On Census night the Millennials were within a whisker of the number of baby boomers and... by now it is almost certain that the Millennials have overtaken the Baby Boomers because they were only 5,000 short last August."

The 2021 Census marks 50 years since Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were first counted in the survey.

This time the number of respondents who identified as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander increased by 25.2 per cent from 2016, to more than 810,000 people or 3.2 per cent of the population.

Dr Liz Allen says the figures aren't surprising.

"We're seeing people more willing to report their identity as being First Nations Australian, and alongside that we do see among First Nations Australians typically a higher birth rate."

But Emeritus Professor Sandra Harding, from the Independent Assurance Panel which investigates the quality of the Census data, says there was likely still under-reporting of First Nations Australians.

"Despite increased efforts and investment by the ABS, an estimated 17% net undercount of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples has persisted in 2021 consistent with the last two Censuses. The ABS will examine this further."

For the first time, the survey asked about long term health conditions, with one of the most widely reported conditions being mental illness, particularly in young adults.

Another new question counted the number of current and former members of the Australian Defence Force - now at more than 580,000.

The Minister responsible for the ABS, and self-proclaimed "data nerd" Andrew Leigh [[lee]], says census information like this affects how the government forms policy.

"Census data helps us better understand emerging communities, informing how and where governments can engage."

But while the Census asked for respondents to identify their sex, and offered answers male, female or non-binary, there are calls for the next census to include more information on gender.

Dr David Gruen says it's the government and parliament that pick the questions, and the former Coalition government instructed the ABS to ask a question on sex but not on gender and not on sexual orientation - but that could change for the next survey.

"There will be an opportunity to revisit that for the 2026 Census and the ABS will engage in a public consultation process starting later this year to ask the community if there are other questions that people think that we should be asking."

The important survey has been and will continue to be crucial in highlighting how Australia is evolving into the future.

Now that you've heard what the big picture looks like from the 2021 census, here's some data on the Bulgarian community in Australia:

There are 3,283 people born in Bulgaria living in Australia, 55% of whom are women.

2,855 people speak Bulgarian at home.

The largest number of Bulgarians arrived in the period 1991-2000 - 927 people.

The most numerous - 22% is the 35-44 age group.

57% of all Bulgarians or 1,799 are married, with the majority being families with children. It is interesting that in families most often both partners work.

49% of all Bulgarians have a university or higher education, just for comparison, this percentage for the whole of Australia is 22.

Over 62% of all Bulgarians work full time.

The most common profession is a computer specialist.

Bulgarians in Australia most often own a 3-bedroom house with a loan from the bank - 58%.

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