Corrections Minister Elise Archer has defended a telephone survey of opinions about the Northern Regional Prison at Westbury which excludes residents of the neighbouring town of Hagley.
The telephone survey of 500 people in the 7303 postcode is part of a Social and Economic Impact Study being done for the state government.
Westbury Residents Against the Prison have questioned why the survey does not include Hagley which is about five kilometres away from the preferred site and yet includes places further afield such as Birralee, Exton and Oaks.
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"It is an absurdity to use the 7303 postcode which includes areas 10km from Westbury, but omits Hagley," president Linda Poulton said.
But a government spokesman said: "The 7303 postcode was targeted to best ensure that the phone survey was more focused than the mail out survey which will go to the entire Meander Valley community".
The SEIS includes a mail out to resident/owner occupier of properties in Meander Valley.
Ms Poulton said the methodology adopted showed that the survey was nothing more than a public relations exercise.
"The use of the 7303 postcode is a clumsy attempt to skew the results of the survey because if Westbury alone were surveyed, we know that a very clear majority would be opposed to the prison," she said.
WRAP has also expressed concern about the way SGS Economics were handed telephone numbers for the survey but the government spokesperson said the phone numbers had been sourced and determined independently from government.