Data collection for the Eslhílhkw’iws Chet – the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Census – is now closed. Between July and October 2022, we asked every Squamish Member over 18 years of age to answer questions about health, housing, jobs, education, language and culture, and other aspects of Squamish life.
Overall, we heard from roughly 1 in every 3 Members, and every generation was well represented in the Census answers. Chet kw’enmantúmi (we thank you) for the high levels of participation!
Throughout the data collection process, Members emphasized the importance of respecting individuals’ privacy and ensuring appropriate controls are in place to protect Eslhílhkw’iws Chet data.
Since the Census closed, Big River Analytics has been preparing the data for analysis, which includes ensuring protecting privacy of respondents. To learn more about that process please click here. Nexwsxwníw̓ntm ta Úxwumixw (Council) and Nation employees cannot access anyone’s individual answers.
Right now, Big River Analytics is separating names from Census answers and cleaning the data. Data cleaning includes tasks such as making the data consistent. For example, the question “How much does your heating cost?” might be answered in a number of ways including $1,000, 1000, $1000 or one thousand however, only one format will be used when reporting on the data.
The data will be used to identify Member priorities and to plan programs, services, and budgets for years to come.
The Census Team is currently working with departments that have identified specific data needs to produce preliminary summaries and support timely access to Eslhílhkw’iws Chet responses. For example, data is already being used by the Wa Lhkwáyel Skwiyíńtsut (Climate Action Strategy) Team to create a baseline understanding of greenhouse gas emissions and identify potential actions to take as part of the Nation’s climate strategy.
By the end of February 2023, the first public reports will be ready to share with Members across all our channels including the website, social media, on-reserve newsletters etc.
Carrying out the Squamish Census was a whole Nation effort! Members were hired and trained as enumerators to lead outreach and encourage participation. They were supported by “boosters”, influential community members who promoted the Census more informally through their networks. 75% of Members who work for Squamish Nation completed the Census and encouraged their family and friends to participate. In-person events, Facebook content, printed materials, Messenger, text (SMS), and door-to-door outreach rounded off the strategy.