Now that the main push for the mailing is over, census will begin sending out its door-to-door census takers to visit households that didn’t mail back the form. Although census will still welcome the mailed in forms, but do not be surprised if a census taker show up at the door starting May 1st. Part of Census Bureau’s effort included asking for suggestions from ethnic media. Despite the re-doubled efforts, mail-in respond rate from known ethnic communities remain low. The International District’s mail-in respond rate is 68%, in comparison to the national rate of 72%.

Now that the main push for the mailing is over, census will begin sending out its door-to-door census takers to visit households that didn’t mail back the form. Although census will still welcome the mailed in forms, but do not be surprised if a census taker show up at the door starting May 1st.

 

Part of Census Bureau’s effort included asking for suggestions from ethnic media. Despite the re-doubled efforts, mail-in respond rate from known ethnic communities remain low. The International District’s mail-in respond rate is 68%, in comparison to the national rate of 72%.

 

In Washington State, nearly 11,000 residents had been hired as census takers. Roughly 1.1 million household have yet to respond. In the City of Seattle alone, there are 1,300 census takers trained.

 

It is part of Census Bureau’s strategy to hire people from within each neighborhood in hope of providing some familiarity. But even so, census had provided some guidelines to avoid fraud, including some of the following:

The census taker must present an ID badge that contains a Department of Commerce watermark and expiration date. The census taker may also be carrying a black canvass bag with a Census Bureau logo.

The census taker will provide supervisor contact information and/or the local census office phone number for verification, if asked.

The census taker will only ask the 10 questions from the 2010 Census form.

The census taker will NOT ask for personal financial information or money.

The Census Bureau has stringent systems in place to ensure that people can feel safe when they open their door to a census taker. All census takers undergo an FBI background check that includes both name and fingerprint checks. All have taken an oath for life to protect the information they collect and understand that they face stiff penalties, jail time or both for any disclosure of personally identifiable information.

 

Census data determine boundaries for state and local legislative and congressional districts. More than $400 billion in federal funds are distributed annually based on census data to pay for local programs and services, such as schools, highways, vocational training, emergency services, hospitals and much more. For every person identified, the neighborhood will gain well over a thousand dollars from the federal funds.

 

The interview will only take about 10 minutes. It is in everyone’s best interest to provide accurate information for census. As for those who have trouble with the language, the census taker will do their best to identify the need with their tools. And don’t forget the help line: English help line 1-866-872-6868, Chinese help line 1-866-935-2010, TDD 1-866-783-2010

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