• NT Thunder player Shannon Rioli wants all Indigenous Australians to complete the upcoming Census (Facebook)Source: Facebook
AFL Player Shannon Rioli recently became a Community Supporter of the 2016 Census, as he believes it’s important to ‘stay up to date’ with a changing Australia.
By
Coxinall Ridgeway

8 Aug 2016 - 5:29 PM  UPDATED 8 Aug 2016 - 5:36 PM

AFL Player Shannon Rioli grew up on the Tiwi Islands, but now lives in Darwin. He comes from a proud sporting family, with all five of his brothers involved in the game in some way.

Coming from such a big family, Shannon jokes that he struggles to keep track of everyone.

“I’m having trouble keeping up with all the new babies being born in our family! I guess it’s even harder to keep up with what’s happening across the country.”

This is one of the issues that motivated Shannon to become a spokesperson of the 2016 Census, as he believes it’s important to ‘stay up to date’ with a changing Australia.

“In all seriousness, the Census is important because it helps us to look after the country. We need to know how many people are out there and what their interests are. It also helps us identify the issues being faced by Indigenous peoples.”

“It will help Government work out what they want to deliver but it will also help them better target their campaigns so that they can benefit the community.”

Along with identifying a range of issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Shannon says the Census provides an opportunity to learn about how to improve services and outcomes.

How can the national census help Indigenous Australians?
Proud Noongar man and media personality, Neil Coyne, is spreading the word about the importance of the upcoming Census on August 9.

“There could be people facing issues around housing, education, employment and health. We talk a lot about closing the gap but we can’t do it if we don’t know what the problem is.”

“The Census can also identify which communities are thriving and work out what’s happening there. It’s information that could be used to improve situations for other people.”

“The Census can also identify which communities are thriving and work out what’s happening there. It’s information that could be used to improve situations for other people.”

Shannon understands that there are many people who are concerned about sharing personal information, but says if we think about, it’s something many of us do in our day to day lives.

“I think people already regularly share information about themselves. You see people on social media sharing their day to day lives, talking about what they are doing and where they have been. That’s how I like to think of it, but the difference is the information we provide in the Census is only used to help make Australia a better place.”

Shannon says he wants to get this message out to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and encourage them to identify, so that all communities can benefit.

“Identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander gives us a sense of identity and belonging. I am personally very proud to identify. It will help Government run better programs for us and make sure we get access to the opportunities we are entitled to.”

“Identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander gives us a sense of identity and belonging. I am personally very proud to identify. It will help Government run better programs for us and make sure we get access to the opportunities we are entitled to.”

To find out more about the Census, search “Census” on the Internet.


 

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