Friday, March 29, 2013

Easter entertainment from the ABS

The ABS was clearly concerned that people would be bored at Easter so yesterday thoughtfully released Socio-economic indexes for areas (SEIFA).

 Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas (SEIFA) is a product developed by the ABS that ranks areas in Australia according to relative socio-economic advantage and disadvantage.  The indexes are based on information from the five-yearly Census.

Media reports have noted the extremes on the advantage and disadvantage scale. Aboriginal communities are predominant among the disadvantaged with Yarrabah rated the most disadvantaged in Australia on the SEIFA scale with Aurukun also among the bottom 5. Interesting that earlier in the week there had also been a dispute over withdrawal of funding by the Qld Gov't for a welfare reform trial in Cape York communities with Noel Pearson slamming the decision of "cowboys".

Conus Economics Blog has also posted concerns on the Cassowary Coast going backwards and getting poorer based on comparison of the 2011 census results with the previous 2006 census. Similar trends are also noted in Cairns:
Significant declines are also seen when we consider the Cairns Regional Council. In particular the Economic Resources Index for the region has fallen such that their position has dropped from the 63rd percentile in 2006 (weighted average between the old Cairns and Douglas Shires) to just the 36th percentile in 2011!
The ABS has provided comprehensive information and resources including download files for mapping in Google Earth. Below is the SA1 socio-economic advantage & disadvantage data for the more central Cairns area. Red is at the most disadvantaged on the index scale (decile 1) and blue the most advantaged (decile 10).

However the sun has come out, so I will wander off to stroll the boardwalk and ponder the location of my bohemian Esplanade abode in the bottom half of the rankings and empathising with those battlers in Western Sydney struggling away on $250K a year, before returning to play around some more later .......

Update: It has been noted that my bohemian retro Esplanade abode, within an SA1 decile 4 zone with a score of 961 is above the Four Mile Beach front at Port Douglas, within a lowly decile 3 zone with a score of just 926. I can spit with contempt at the Sheraton Mirage!

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