Māori are being encouraged to participate in this year's census.

Advocates say the data collected helps the government plan for the future.

Statistics NZ is taking a digital-first approach in the hope at least 70% will take part online and advocate George Ngatai are urging Māori to fill out their forms.

Ngatai adds that an important question is: is your house mouldy?

“Ko tēnei te wā kia whakamanatia ērā kōrero i runga hoki i tēnei census, kia whakamōhio ai mātou āe he kaupapa tēnei mō tātou o Counties-Manukau mō te Tari Whare me te kāwanatanga kia tautokohia tēnei āhuatanga.”

The difference this year is Statistics NZ is encouraging people to fill out their forms online.

Census Day is on the March 6.

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