Religious Affiliation


The questionnaire module is to:

  • allow respondents to object to answering the question
  • allow respondents to state that they have no religion
  • facilitate the coding of responses to level 3 of the classification via the codefile, to ensure comparability across collections.

Object to answering

Respondents have the right to object to answering the religious affiliation question on any Statistics New Zealand survey. Therefore, provisions need to be made to solicit an ‘object to answering’ response by individual surveys. The following provide guidelines to do so for specific types of surveys:

  • Self–administered surveys (such as the Census of Population and Dwellings) should always contain a category box with the descriptor ‘object to answering’.
  • Interviewer–administered surveys that use a ‘showcard’ to aid respondents in answering should also include an ‘object to answering’ category that may be selected by respondents.
  • Interviewer–administered surveys such as telephone surveys or interviews that do not include the use of a ‘showcard’ should explain to the respondent that they have the right to object to answering BEFORE they are asked to give their religious affiliation.


The questionnaire module below is an example that meets the requirements documented in this statistical standard. Other questionnaire modules may vary in format but should conform to the requirements contained in this statistical standard.

Graph, Example Question.