The former head of Statistics Canada has a new job.
Dr. Munir Sheikh is now a distinguished fellow and adjunct professor in the school of policy studies at Queen's University, in Kingston.
"Dr. Sheikh will contribute to the research, teaching and outreach activities of the school," an advertising announcement on the second page of Saturday's business section of the Globe and Mail said.
Sheikh resigned his position with Stats Canada July 21, saying in a statement that he could not agree with the federal government's plans to make the long census voluntary.
"Under the circumstances, I have tendered my resignation to the prime minister," Sheikh said in a written statement.
On July 27 he told a Commons committee that the reputation of Stats Canada "has suffered."
But Sheikh said it is the government's right to set policy, and up to the civil servants to set it in motion.
The committee returned in the middle of the summer break to discuss the government's decision to make the long-form census voluntary instead of mandatory, eliminating fines and possible jail time as penalties for not filling it out.
Critics, including Sheikh, say a voluntary census will be inherently biased because Canadians with low incomes, less education, and visible minorities are less likely to fill it out.
But Industry Minister Tony Clement said he wasn't closing the door to other ideas that would balance the need for privacy with the need for information.
“If there are other solutions arrived at by this committee or by the provinces or by other groups that do not do violence to the principles that we are trying to express, I would certainly take a look at those,” Clement said.
Liberal MP Anthony Rota pointed out the government left in place the threat of jail time for not filling out the shorter eight-question census. The threat of jail time also remains for the lengthy agricultural census, he said.
Clement said the government could keep the long-form census mandatory and eliminate the penalties, "but if you have it mandatory but there are no sanctions, it's pretty much an empty threat."
Statistics Canada says they got 22 privacy complaints about the 2006 census.
On Aug. 1, Sheikh told the Joint Statistical Meetings in Vancouver that people "actually may never be able to know if the data is good or bad” without the long-form.