Young Torres Strait Islander people aged from 15 to 24 years, were the most likely age group to have left the Torres Strait Islands between 2011 and 2016, while those aged 25-34 years were most likely to have moved there, data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reveals.
The ABS’ Indigenous and Social Information Branch Program Manager, Dean Bowley said, “More than 2 in 10, or 246 young Torres Strait Islander people left for the mainland between the 2011 and 2016 Census. In comparison, Torres Strait Islander people aged 25 to 34 years were returning to the Islands, with more than 1 in 10, or 103 of those living on the Islands in 2016 having moved there during that period. They were most likely to have moved from Cairns.”
In other findings, year 12 completion for Torres Strait Islander people living in the Torres Strait Region improved marginally, with 46 per cent reporting in the 2016 Census that they had completed year 12 or its equivalent – an increase from 44 per cent in the 2011 Census. The proportion of Torres Strait Islander people in the 2016 Census with year 12 completion was higher in the Region than for Torres Strait Islander people in the rest of Queensland (43 per cent) and the rest of Australia outside of Queensland (32 per cent).
Mr Bowley went on to say, “this article is further evidence of the ABS’ commitment to ongoing engagement in the Torres Strait region and supporting local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to further develop understanding of their region’s data”.
The Torres Strait Regional Authority (TSRA) has welcomed the efforts of the ABS to return data and information to the communities from which it is sourced, to increase the level of understanding locally and use of statistics to inform evidence-based policies.
These results and more are featured in the ABS publication, Changing characteristics of the Torres Strait region and its people – a collaborative article developed with the TSRA to provide a local perspective of the trends revealed from ABS data. This partnership illustrates the ABS’ commitment to returning information to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and to deliver more effective regionally focused information.