This morning my good blogger friend Helen at http://helenmade.blogspot.com/ sent me an e-mail with information regarding the 2010 census and because last year we had an incident in our apartment building with the harrassment of one of the elderly and ill tenants by a census worker, I thought I would share this information. But to explain first what occurred here:
A woman had returned numerous times to knock on a tenant's apartment door and we could hear her yelling from outside the door to the tenant that she had to open the door and answer questions and when the tenant refused, the woman would leave. But she would return again. No one was sure who she was, maybe someone from the County, as no one else had her come to their door and I guess everyone who had seen or heard her had assumed that the tenant would have told her daughter of the incidents so she could take care of it.
This tenant is very afraid and seldom leaves her apartment and only opens her door to family or those of us she knows. On the 3rd or 4th time this woman came back, I heard her being persistant in her telling the person to open the door and she did not go away this time. From inside my apartment - which is 4 doors down and on the opposite side of the hall - I heard this woman repeat in a very loud voice "You finished the --- grade? That was the last grade that you finished?" I thought what in the world is this person doing repeating this personal information so that everyone can hear!
I opened my apartment door and looked down the hall and this woman was actually standing in the hall outside the tenant's door yelling in the questions to the person inside, who was afraid and refusing to open the door, and then repeating every answer she received in this same loud voice so that anyone in the hall or adjoining apartments could hear.
I went out in the hall and another tenant joined me and I asked the woman to step into my apartment, out of the hallway, and questioned her of who she was and what was she thinking repeating someone's personal information from the hallway. The woman was hyper nervous and started crying and asked us to please not report her as she would get in trouble and she was a single mother and out of work and this was her only income. etc. She said that she was desperate to get this information as her boss said she must not come back until she had the it and this was the last time she could try and he would be very angry and she would be fired and also she would be legally in trouble for the way in which she was obtaining this information, etc. When I asked her for identification, she had a name badge on that was covered with a scarf she wore around her neck and that was about it. She left and we reported it to the manager.
(We later learned that this woman had harrassed one other tenant also. Our building is a security locked building so this woman should not have had access to the apartments without the permission of the manager - but the manager is only here 3 1/2 days a week - and one of the other tenants would just let her in without asking who she was.)
This information may help you with identifying the credentials of a census worker.
Be Cautious About Giving Information to Census Workers With the U.S. With the census process beginning, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) advises people to be cooperative, but cautious, so as not to become a victim of fraud or identity theft.
The first phase of the 2010 U.S. Census is under way as workers have begun verifying the addresses of households across the country. The big question is - how do you tell the difference between a U.S.. Census worker and a con artist? BBB offers the following advice:
If a U.S. Census worker knocks on your door, they will have a badge, a handheld device, a Census Bureau canvas bag, and a confidentiality notice. Ask to see their identification and their badge before answering their questions. However, you should never invite anyone you don't know into your home.
Census workers are currently only knocking on doors to verify address information.
Do not give your Social Security number, credit card or banking information to anyone, even if they claim they need it for the U.S. Census. REMEMBER, NO MATTER WHAT THEY ASK, YOU REALLY ONLY NEED TO TELL THEM HOW MANY PEOPLE LIVE AT YOUR ADDRESS.
While the Census Bureau might ask for basic financial information, such as a salary range, YOU DON'T HAVE TO ANSWER ANYTHING AT ALL ABOUT YOUR FINANCIAL SITUATION. The Census Bureau will not ask for Social Security, bank account, or credit card numbers, nor will employees solicit donations. Anyone asking for that information is NOT with the Census Bureau.
Eventually, Census workers may contact you by telephone, mail, or in person at home. However, the Census Bureau WILL NOT CONTACT YOU BY E-MAIL, so be on the lookout for Email scams impersonating the Census.Never click on a link or open any attachments in an Email that are supposedly from the U.S. Census Bureau.
I also went on-line and found this information.
Preparing For the Census Taker - What To Do When a Census Taker Vsits You.
If you don't send back your form, you may receive a visit from a census taker. If a census taker visits you, here's what you should do:
First ask to see their ID. All census workers carry official government badges marked with just their name; they may also have a "U.S. Census Bureau" bag. Note that the census taker will never ask to enter your home.
If you're still not certain about their identity, please call the Regional Census Center's to confirm they are employed by the Census Bureau.
Answer the census form questions for your entire household (you must be at least 15 years old to answer questions) so that the census taker can record the results for submission to the Census Bureau.
Census takers visit local homes several times to capture resident information for the 2010 Census. If you prefer, you can schedule a visit with your census taker. Should the census taker come when you are away from your home, they will leave a contact number. If a census taker has not visited your home or you have a question about your participation with the census, call your Census office.
Help for on-English Speaking Respondents
Census takers will have a flashcard containing a sentence about the 2010 Census written in approximately 50 languages. If a resident doesn't speak English, the census taker shows the flashcard to the resident, and the resident points to the language he/she speaks. A census crew Leader will then reassign the case to a person who speaks that language.
Thanks for stopping by today!