The U.S. Census Bureau released a slick map application this week that lets you track 2010 Census participation by city, county or zip code.
I have to admit, we got our Census forms last week, and I still haven’t filled them out yet. If you’re in the same position, be careful of a scam going around that we reported on today. You do not have to provide your Social Security number on any Census form. And the Census Bureau has not yet started their door-to-door canvassing of households who haven’t returned their forms via the mail.
The agency’s regional office put out a press release today on the issue:
It is important to remember that door to door follow-up Census operations with households will not begin until late spring. These follow up operations will be conducted by official Census takers. If you have any questions about Census operations in your area, you may call the Kansas City Regional Census Center at (816) 994-2000. Here are some tips on how you can identify an official Census taker.
An official 2010 Census taker:
–Must present an ID Badge containing a Department of Commerce watermark and expiration date.
–May also be carrying a bag with a 2010 Census logo.
–Will provide you with their supervisor’s contact information and/or the local census office phone number for verification, if asked.
–Will only ask you questions appearing on the official 2010 Census form. If you need assistance completing your Census form, you may call (866) 872-6868.
Census answers are confidential and protected by federal law. All U.S. Census Bureau employees have taken an oath and are subject to 5 years in prison and/or a $250,000 fine if they disclose any information that could identify you or your household. Answers will only be used for statistical purposes. The 2010 Census will ask for name, gender, age, race, ethnicity, relationship, and whether the home is owned or rented and how many people live in the home. The 2010 Census also asks for your phone number. If question responses are not understood, the household will be called.
Also, Census takers will:
–NOT ask for your social security number, bank account number or credit card number.
–NOT ask any information about your taxes or income.
–NEVER solicit donations or contact you by e-mail.
–ONLY ask you the questions listed on the Census questionnaire.