​National Community Attitudes

Client: Australian Government Department of Social Services

In May, a nation-wide survey of community attitudes to safety and well-being will begin. The survey is being conducted for the Australian Government Department of Social Services.

What is the survey about?

The survey is focused on community attitudes to violence. The survey is being conducted across Australia. The results of the study will help to inform policy on violence and related issues in the Australian community in order to improve public health and safety.

Who is conducting the survey?

The Social Research Centre is contracted to conduct the telephone interviews required for this survey.

Who has been selected for interview?

Households, as well as individuals with a mobile phone are selected on a random basis to take part. Any information provided will be treated in the strictest confidence by The Social Research Centre. The Department will not receive any information from the survey that could identify you or your household.

How will the information be used?

The information collected in this study will be used by the Australian Government, state and territory governments to help improve the health and safety of all Australians.

What information will be collected?

The survey is focused on community attitudes to violence. People participating in the survey will also be asked about their personal beliefs on violence and related issues. They will be asked for information about themselves, such as their age and their place of birth.

Why you should participate in the survey?

It is vital the survey represents all sectors of the Australian population accurately and fairly. Feedback on these issues helps to improve the public health and safety of all Australians.

How did we get your telephone number?

All telephone numbers, landline and mobile, have been generated randomly by computer to cover all possible telephone numbers, including listed and unlisted numbers. This is to ensure the sample represents all sectors of the Australian population. We are dialling both landline and mobile phone numbers as many people are only contactable via the mobile phone. It is important that these people are also included in the survey.

How long will the survey take to complete?

The survey will take about 20 minutes to complete, depending on your answers. If you would prefer to participate in the survey at another time that is more convenient for you, this can be arranged. The survey will be conducted until the end of October.

Is the survey compulsory?

No, it is entirely voluntary and you are free to withdraw from the survey at any time. However, your participation is important if the Department is to get accurate feedback from all Australians.

Why do we need to speak to the person with the most recent birthday?

In order to ensure as representative a sample as possible, asking to speak to the person aged 16 years or over in each household who is having the next birthday enables us to randomly select a person in each household. Those who are contacted on their mobile phone will be asked to participate if they are aged 16 years or over. If the randomly selected person is aged 16 or 17, the interviewer from the Social Research Centre will ask for parental consent before commencing the interview.

How do we ensure your privacy is protected?

Any information you provide will be completely confidential and your own answers will not be identified as individual responses. Responses are used for research purposes only. Your personal information will not be used or disclosed without your consent for any purpose other than those for which it was collected and notified to you, unless required by or authorised under law. No other agency or department will have access to your details. We are bound by the Provisions of the Commonwealth Privacy Act, as amended in December 2001.

At the end of the interview, you may be asked if you can be contacted again in the future. If you agree, your contact details will be kept separately from the survey data for up to ten years. They will not be provided to the Department. Again, this is entirely voluntary and you may change your mind at any time by contacting the Social Research Centre. Information provided by you will be stored securely by the Social Research Centre, in accordance with the Australian Government’s records management framework. Further information about the Social Research Centre’s privacy policy can be found here.

Where can I get more information about the survey?

If you have any questions about the survey, please contact the Social Research Centre at community.attitudes@srcentre.com.au or call 1800 023 040.

This survey has been approved by the University of Melbourne Human Ethics Research Committee. If you have any concerns or complaints about the project please contact humanethics-complaints@unimelb.edu.au and quote # 1647276.1 as the project reference number.