Category Errors

From Craig Young, 25 February 2019

Statistics New Zealand was initially quite pleased that it had apparently finally managed to provide the basis for future statistical measurement of LGBT New Zealand population numbers and attributes when it came to the periodic census. But...

Statistics New Zealand issued an interim report that proposed a final category, but in addition to lesbian, gay, bisexual, asexual and heterosexual category, there was one for 'pedosexuals' (pedophiles). Understandably, the latter inclusion incensed members of our communities. The new standard for measurement is intended to facilitate government data collection when it comes to strategic planning for future government service provision to LGBT New Zealanders through introducing a new category for sexual orientation identification. The addition of the 'pedophile' category only came to light after the report's publication, much to the annoyance of LGBT individuals who read it. Thus, Statistics New Zealand was forced to apologise and excise the erroneous 'category.' In April 2018, a submissions process had resulted in input from nine hundred respondents.

The original document read that the categories were lesbian, gay and bisexual as well as 'not elsewhere categorised,''refused to answer', 'response unidentifiable', 'response outside scope' and 'not stated.' The problem was that about ninety synonyms were included, including queer, asexual and the offending category earlier cited. The current headaches are only one in a series of headaches that New Zealand LGBT communities have had with Statistics New Zealand, from homophobic initial Clark administration Statistics Minister John Tamihere to the ongoing problems over categories for sexual orientation and gender identity, which meant that they were omitted from the 2018 New Zealand census, much to the anger of Greens co-leader and current Statistics Minister James Shaw, who blamed the negligence and underfunding legacy of the Key and English administrations for the latest blunder.


Georgia Forester: "Statistics New Zealand forced to apologise after sexual orientation blunder in report" Stuff: 20.02.2019:

Sarah Murphy: "Stats NZ document wrongly grouped queer and takatapui people with pedophiles" Radio New Zealand: 20.02.2019: