Steve Double and Scott Mann secure meeting with Office of National Statistics on Cornish tick box status in ‘Help Shape our Future’ White Paper

Cornish Members of Parliament Steve Double and Scott Mann have met with Cabinet Office Minister Chloe Smith following the disappointing recommendations announced by the Office of National Statistics yesterday.

The recommendations, published as part of the ‘Help Shape our Future’ White Paper, did not commit to a dedicated tick box for people who identify as Cornish in the next national census – something which many in Cornwall have campaigned on.

Commenting, Steve said:

“Scott and I were pleased to secure an urgent meeting with the Cabinet Minister Chloe Smith yesterday following the ONS’s announcement on the tick box.”

“We both felt this was a positive meeting in clarifying the ONS’s position and the further steps we can take to press for the inclusion of the Cornish Tick Box on future censuses.”

“We explained to the Minister that the ONS’s current position does not reflect the statement the Government made on the Cornish ethnic minority status on 2014 – something we are determined to see realised.”

“It was also clear that the ONS sees this issue as something that is a geographical one. This is incorrect. Cornish people are not confined to just Cornwall. There is a diaspora of Cornish people who live all across the UK who should be allowed to identify as just that. That is what we need to impress on the ONS.”

“We were pleased that the Minister has agreed to broker a meeting with Scott and I, along with leading figures from the Cornish Tick Box campaign, and the ONS, in the New Year, where we will continue to press the case for the Tick Box’s inclusion in future censuses.”

“The White Paper acts as a consultation and I would encourage anyone with views on the lack of inclusion of a dedicated Cornish tick-box option to email the ONS at info@ons.gov.uk

The White Paper can be read via the below link:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/765089/Census2021WhitePaper.pdf