I’ve accepted a temporary job as a census enumerator. I’m not sure of all the details yet, but what this means is that after four days of training at the end of the month, I will begin trekking along in my compact Sedan, knocking on the doors of people who haven’t filled out the Census for whatever reason, and asking them questions.
I do know a few things I will NOT be doing:
– Endorsing any political party or candidate
– Reporting anyone to the police or INS
– Taking anyone’s firearms
– Taking anyone to an internment camp.
Seriously, I really don’t have that much room in my car. I will carry a clipboard and wear a lanyard with a federal ID on it. I will ask questions. Like, “How many people live in your house?” “What are their names?” “What race do you identify yourself with?” And a few other questions.
I’ve been asked by some people about why the Census asks for things like your name, your birth date, and your race.
From my understanding, I will need your name to make sure your aren’t counted twice. I will need your birth date and the birth date of those in your house so that your town can receive the funding it needs for classrooms, for safe routes to school, or for senior citizen services. I will need to know your race because – yes – there is also federal and state funding for certain programs for minorities. Some folks have been answering “other/human” in the race category, and I’m pretty sure that will make you a minority.
Your info will be kept private, not sold to private companies or scary government folk, and it will be released in 72 years so maybe your great-grandchildren can get some solid info on where their ancestors lived.
If you haven’t filled out the form and will be visited by an enumerator, answering the questions will help you get proper road construction and infrastructure, educational facilities, and any other municipal, county, state or federal service that you may take for granted each day. If you don’t fill out the Census, the only person you are really sticking it to is yourself.
For more information, visit The Official Census Web Site.