Wednesday, July 21, 2010

"In light of today's media coverage..."

This morning, Tony Clement gives an in depth Q & A in the Globe, where he talks about the relationship between StatsCan and the government, their role in the Census changes, and his relationship with chief statistician Munir Sheikh.

Clement ends the Q & A by assuring us that both him and Mr. Sheikh will release statements today in support of the changes:

Q: Ok. What is the point of the statement tomorrow? Why more statements?

A: I think Munir wants to assure Canadians that Statscan is going to do its job -- and [explain] the nature of what that job is -- and then I will want to assure Canadians that we have confidence in Statscan -- that it can do its job.

And now...

Head of StatsCan mulls future over census crisis

OTTAWA - The head of Statistics Canada says he's "reflecting" on his position at the agency, the latest twist in the crisis over the government's decision to scrub the mandatory long-form census.

Munir Sheikh issued a terse email to all agency employees today cancelling a planned staff meeting and saying he would comment soon — sparking speculation from insiders that he might resign.


"In light of today's media coverage, I am cancelling the scheduled Town Hall meeting," wrote Sheikh, a respected economist with service in both Liberal and Conservative governments.

"I am reflecting on my position and that of the agency and will get back to you soon."

UPDATE - The Head of StatsCan has resigned in protest, saying the voluntary Census will not work. But hey, Tony knows best...


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