US Census workers are humans too

by Enumerator
(East Coast USA)

3 years in to retirement and after a difficult adjustment, I finally found a well-paying part time temporary job as a Census enumerator.

It's a job with meaning (I need that) as the numbers determine, among other things, our representation in Congess and federal funding for local schools, roads, and hospitals.

Here's the hard part: it amazes me how rude and mean people feel free to be!

My best hope is that they are ignorant of the purpose of the Census and would be more civil if they understood.

Before a word is out of my mouth, although I have an i.d. badge and Census bag like you see on tv, they shout things like, "Go away," or "Get off my property" and slam a door or the window through which they shout.

The training led me to expect this and not take it personally, but I am still human, and even with this perspective, it hurts a little.
We enumerators must be polite and I am, even to the nastiest.

One or two respondents have even kindly offered me water, which I appreciate more than is imaginable! (I carry my own.)

This doesn't begin to address COVID-19 issues, but I think most people are familiar with that.
So, please, if an enumerator comes knocking, remember to be civil to the person who works for YOU!

If the Census Bureau had received your response we wouldn't be there, you are legally required to respond, your information is well-protected, it can be done anonymously, and we really only need to know how many people live at the address.
I could be your mother, sister, brother, son, etc. so please treat me as you would want them to be treated.

I work on your behalf!

Comments for US Census workers are humans too

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by: Donna

I did my census on line several months ago.

Last week someone from census rang my doorbell. I didn't go to the door because I never do unless I am expecting someone.

I got a paper that was left and it showed they had come to the wrong house. There was no number to call to explain.

In 4 days they came again and I told them they needed to go to the house next door. I thought it was odd seeing that both of our homes have mailboxes out front beside our respective driveways with the house number on the mailbox post. I was glad they were not an EMT etc.

by: John A / Tyler, Tx

The rudeness Enumerator experiences seems to have become common place in our society; the norm rather than the exception. I only have thoughts/opinions on why this happens.

Since I worked in the energy industry, I too experienced the same thing while dealing with customers.

To me, there appears to be a deep distrust of government workers and what are perceived as quasi-governmental agencies such as utilities.

In these instances, I feel people think the government is too big and non responsive to their needs since they are only thought of as a number. The intrusiveness of government and big business fuels a lot of resentment in people and rudeness is the end result.

Then I feel the use of the Internet has created a lot of rudeness via social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and several others; where people say and do the meanest things without suffering repercussions. This rudeness carries over into the daily lives of people when dealing with others face to face.

We hear of mean spirited things being said by ALL politicians on both sides of the aisle. It is not just the president who has been accused of this; it’s all of them. And this has carried over into our daily lives where all of us are angry at each other.

We are all divided by race, color, religion, political affiliation, region, and who knows what else. All that is known is people are rude to each other for many reasons; it’s a symptom of a deep underlying societal cancer that has been festering for many years; not just the last four years.

But what is most disturbing is that we let it happen by participating in the vitriol at one time or another.

As I mentioned at first, these are only thoughts about rudeness and the causes. So, keep your responses civil instead of propagating the problem further.

by: Wendy

Dear Enumerator,

In Today's Society, people are just rude.

I watch it daily on Facebook, but I always think they are hidden, behind the screen, so it's easier to be mean.

But we all see it elsewhere public places, where did our manners go? Why on earth don't we behave civilly towards each other? I just don't understand.

I must say one thing: I do genealogy research on and YES, the census matters.

I've found so much info using the census... sometimes faulty names as the census taker wrote the name slightly different from how it was spelled. BUT with all the other info in the report, I know who it is, and I have yet one more clue to their life!

I do as I know it will be out there for future generations, so I want to document my family and make the DNA connections while I can!

OOPS! Thank you Enumerator for doing your job!

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