Census workers going door-to-door Saturday

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Dothan, AL (WSFA) – If you haven't mailed back your census form yet, be expecting a house call.  Starting Saturday, Census workers will be knocking on doors of those who haven't completed them.

The 2010 Census is one of the shortest forms in history.  Dr. Betty Armstrong said, "We thought it was a lot easier than the ones a long time ago.  They had several pages, and now it's very simplified."

She is one of the 70 % of Alabamians who have already mailed back their Census.   Workers will now come knocking on the doors of the other 30%.

Houston County Complete Count Committee Chairperson Chancey Sinquefield said, "We need full participation because the money Houston County receives from the Federal Government is directly tied to the number of participants we have in the Census."

House calls aren't just for delinquent mailers, they'll also come to those with P.O. boxes, but before you open your door to just anyone, there are two specific things you should be looking for when they arrive.

Sinquefield said, "If they are not wearing a badge, do not open your door, and do not let them come in.  They should also have a bag that has Census 2010 on it."

If you're still unsure about opening your door to a stranger, remember that workers shouldn't ask to come inside or ask you any other questions that aren't on the census form.

If they ask you any personal questions, it's probably a scam.

"They should not be asking for your Social Security Number, and they should not be asking for any kind of banking or savings account information," said Sinquefield.

Census workers will continue coming to your home until you answer the door, and each time those workers show up, it's the taxpayers who pick up the tab.

"They get paid $10-25 dollars per hour, and the more houses they have to go around to, the more money that's going to be."

It's an investment in our future that will impact us all for the next ten years.

Alabama is right on mark with the national average of participation rates at 70%.

In our viewing area, Autauga and Elmore counties are tied for the highest return rates at 76%, while Bullock County is the lowest at only 33 %.

The door-to-door campaign will run until July.

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