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Data Exchange Update March 2022

Data Exchange Surveys

The Data Exchange team has committed to run a series of monthly surveys covering different topics regarding the use of the Data Exchange. This month, the survey will focus on the collection of information on gender.

The Department is seeking feedback from organisations on how the DEX gender values can better align with the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Standard for Sex, Gender, Variations of Sex Characteristics and Sexual Orientation Variables, 2020 (The Standard).

DEX collects information on gender, not sex. Gender is a social and cultural concept. Gender identity is about who a person feels themself to be, which may or may not match the sex they were assigned at birth.

The current DEX list of values for gender includes ‘intersex/indeterminate’, however the ABS standard refers to intersex as a variation of sex characteristics and is not included as a value listed for gender. The Standard suggests the following value options when collecting information on gender:

  • Man or male
  • Women or female
  • Non-binary
  • [I/They] use a different term
  • Prefer not to answer or  Not stated / Inadequately described (as an alternative)

The current list of values in DEX includes:

  • Male
  • Female
  • Intersex/Indeterminate
  • Not stated/Inadequately described

Any changes to DEX impacts on organisations so we have four options for your consideration:

  1. Option 1A: Change the name of 'intersex/indeterminate' to 'Non-binary' and add the value '[I/They] use a different term'.

    This option would result in all current 'intersex/indeterminate' clients becoming 'non-binary' which is not necessarily correct. It includes the addition of '[I/They] use a different term' which does align closer to The Standard.
     
  2. Option 1B: Change the name of 'intersex/indeterminate' to 'Non-Binary'.

    This option has the lowest impact on organisations, however, as above, all current 'intersex/indeterminate' clients would become 'Non-binary' clients which is not necessarily correct. This option does not include the value '[I/They] use a different term'.
     
  3. Option 2A: Retire the value 'Intersex/indeterminate' and add the values 'Non-binary' and '[I/They] use a different term'.

    Retiring the value 'Intersex/indeterminate' allows those clients who have previously selected this option to remain identified as 'intersex/indeterminate' in the DEX Reports and doesn't assume they are 'Non-binary'. It includes the addition of '[I/They] use a different term' which aligns closest to The Standard.
     
  4. Option 2B: Retire the value 'Intersex/indeterminate' and add the value 'Non-binary'.

    As with Option 2A, by retiring the value 'Intersex/indeterminate' it allows those clients who have previously selected this option to remain identified as 'intersex/indeterminate' in the DEX Reports and doesn't assume they are 'Non-binary'. This option does not include the value '[I/They] use a different term'.

We invite you to participate in this short but very important survey.

Follow the link below to complete the survey. The survey will close at 17:00 on April 1.

Start Survey

Update on Program Specific Guidance

The Program Specific Guidance for Commonwealth Agencies document has recently been updated and published on the DEX website. The updates include the addition of new programs, the removal of programs which have ended, and modifications to existing programs. Please refer to the Version History on page 239 of the document for reference to those changes.

The Program Specific Guidance for State Agencies document has also been updated and published on the DEX website. The update saw the addition of a new program.

Update on the Data Exchange Reports Website URL

In September 2021, the Data Exchange reports website URL changed. To ensure a smooth transition, the old URL was coded to redirect to the new address. That URL will be decommissioned on the 31st of March. We recommend users access the reports using the following link:

https://ssr.dss.gov.au