UK-Northern Ireland 2021 Census Ignoring Minority Religions; Scotland 2022 Census and How to List Ethnicity as Jewish #unitedkingdom #general #records

Jan Meisels Allen



The 2021 Census Questionnaire  of Northern Ireland reportedly is ignoring minority religions such as Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Pagan or Baha’i.  The questionnaire does include Roman Catholic, Presbyterian church of Ireland, Church of Ireland, Methodist Church of Ireland, Other and None.  This is in contrast to the Census 2021 Questionnaire of England, Wales and Scotland. Census day is March 21, 2021 and it is encouraged to be filled out online.  See:


You can click on the questionnaire for England and Wales at:


See question 16 on either England’s or Wales’ 2021 Questionnaire on religion which includes a group of minority religions, including Jewish.

Scotland has moved its census to 2022 due to the pandemic and has not yet posted the questionnaire. See:


Based on Scotland’s census 2021 equality impact assessment they made the following analysis about how people should list “Jewish” in other ethnic category. See:

And scroll down to: race, then scroll to Information on the Jewish Population.


To read more see:


To see the previous postings on the UK census go to the archives of the IAJGS Records Access Alert at: You must be registered to access the archives.  To register go to: and follow the instructions to enter your email address, full name and which genealogical  organization with whom you are affiliated   You will receive an email response that you have to reply to or the subscription will not be finalized.


Jan Meisels Allen

Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee



Michael Sharp

Due to a recent BBC programme there has been much debate in the media over whether Jews are a minority ethnic community in the UK.

The lists of ethnicity on government forms are not intended to be comprehensive due to the sheer number of ethnic communities, and there is an 'other' category if respondents wish to use it.

Jews are recognised as a protected ethnicity in UK equality legislation and the reason stated for not listing Jewish as an ethnicity on census forms is recognising a sensitivity related to the Holocaust on the number of Jews being explicitly counted by the state and the religious affiliation of individuals being recorded by name.

In addition, it must be accepted that some Jews in Britain consider themselves as British first and Jewish second, not the other way around,

There is a risk of wokeness in the discussion taking place about the census forms. To list and provide checkboxes for every single ethnicity in the UK would take several pages. A line should be drawn under the discussion.
Michael Sharp
Manchester UK