Formerly the non-partisan watchdog of the 2010 US Census, and currently an opinion blog that covers all things political, media, foreign policy, globalization, and culture…but sometimes returning to its census/demographics roots.
I haven’t been paid since starting work April 27. They’ve given me the run around for 3 weeks now, always saying “Wait until next Wednesday” When I call on Wednesdays to tell them that I haven’t been paid, no answer, no voicemail. Two weeks since verifying my routing number in person at the LCO, still no pay. When I go to LCO to straighten it out they belittle and ignore me, tell me they are working on it. I had to get my FOS to go down there to back me up, even with his help I was sent to yet another person, who told me to wait until Wednesday. I don’t believe them but I don’t have anything else I can do. The hierarchy is ironclad against justly addressing such a serious issue from the lowest position. Ridiculous.
While waiting I hear the office people accusing Enumerators of milking hours. The office changes the rules 5 times a week and will not accept accurately completed EQs because they don’t align with what the computer wants. Our production has decreased, but thats because 1. we are re-verifying returned EQs, 2. dealing with the more difficult NRFUs in binders, 3. are in a particularly low response and relutant area. In the beginning all the CLs were told to get apartment buildings and vacants to boost numbers. All that was rejected and sent back, apparently the computer couldn’t handle it, and whoever gave those instructions were fired and replaced by people from DC. Now, predictably, there are too many vacants and 1 occupant households for the system’s liking, but thats the accurate count of the area, regardless of a computer’s wishes. We are no longer allowed to accept proxy response.Even if there are a lot of dishonest CLAs and Enumerators in my area, they are not in my group. Thankfully we have a good CL & good CLAs, but still get threatened, blamed, and punished for issues at the office, other areas, or the reality of the population in our area.
We live in a commuter city with lots of immigrants. Most people mistrust the government and/or just aren’t home after work until after dark. Instead of respecting respondent’s wishes who comply with the count but don’t want to give more information, they reassign the EQ 3 more times until the poor people are badgered to death. I didn’t know this was policy so now I feel bad for assuring reluctant respondents that the EQ is complete and they will not be bothered by the Census anymore. That was my word. At the time we were only allowed to visit 3 times, then we were told to visit unlimited times but erase and make it look like 3, then we were told to document all visits on blank EQs, then we were told to stop that because it is too much paperwork. I don’t know how the scanners are supposed to handle all that erasing, plus the erasing and resigning we have to do to verify an EQ. Every other day the office says slow down for accuracy and completion or you’ll get canned for fraud, then the next day they say speed up for numbers and to meet the deadline or you’ll get fired for low production. It’s all a puppeteering act to make whoever is up the chain get the numbers that make them look good. From what I’ve seen, the Census is far from aiming to take an accurate count of the population. It seems much more focus on frivilous and ever changing whims of people who get overtime pay and immunity from discipline forms or accountability. No wonder people don’t have a good feeling about the Census.
We haven’t had new binders in weeks although our area is still largely uncounted.
I’ve enjoyed walking in my neighborhood, meeting people, and helping them get counted so we can have accurate representation. Aside from not being paid, I’m concerned about not getting comprehensive answers for why the specific questions on the Census are asked and what the information is used for, and the lack of respect for respondent’s refusals to provide more than a count. Of course much of this could be avoided if people would just mail in their form. The mismanagement and disorganization is unfortunate considering how important this data actually is.
I’ve been working diligently and honestly at this job, and waited patiently and politely. It has been too long and I’m tired.
anonymous, I feel your pain. How ridiculous you have not been paid for one month! Some commentors have said to call your Representative or Senator – I would. How true your observations are regarding your workplace. Good Luck!
I’m getting a little tired of this myself. I am owed about seven hundred dollars (about two weeks worth for me) since working from April 27th for the census. I have been polite, patient, and following protocol and still nothing. After not receiving anything this past Wednesday, I called again. I had two payroll employees tell me they would get back with me about my issues. A day and a half later, nothing. Not even a phone call. When I called my local office today, (Thurs) I couldn’t get anyone on the phone. The regional office up in Detroit has firmly told me I must deal with my local office regarding this issue. WOW! Where would one go from here? I feel like I’m in a vacuum!
Have you had any success?
MyTwoCensus was originally created as the the non-partisan watchdog of the 2010 United States Census and now covers all demographics issues.