My Two Census

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.

Washington Post: Tales of abuse against census workers

Today, The Washington Post published a very detailed story about incidents involving census workers. Click HERE for the full article. Some highlights:

“So far, the Census Bureau has tallied 379 incidents involving assaults or threats on the nation’s 635,000 census workers, more than double the 181 recorded during the 2000 census. Weapons were used or threatened in a third of the cases.”

“Steven Jost, a spokesman for the Census Bureau, said it is unlikely that the policy prohibiting census workers from carrying weapons will be rescinded.”

“The number of verified incidents might go down after analysis.”

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44 Responses to “Washington Post: Tales of abuse against census workers”

  1. not made up Says:

    These stories are not made up. Some irate individuals do believe the Census is intrusive. I had rocks thrown at me during map-spotting last year! I’ve had rocks thrown at my car!

  2. DairylandCL Says:

    Is there a listing anywhere of all the assaults, accidents, and injuries involving us? I live in the Northwoods and local news just isn’t doing it for me.

  3. GS-X Says:

    Did Gabriel Sanchez knock on any doors?

  4. Bobby J Says:

    “An unexpected result for some census takers: the wrath of irate Americans” – no, not unexpected. Many people called it, including myself in a post on this site before the census officially started. If I knew it, surely these census bureau bureaucrats should have known it.

    “Police have been dispatched after confrontations between census takers and property owners who posted No Trespassing signs. As federal government employees, the census takers are not breaking the law by disregarding the signs.” – anyone want to comment on that? Were you told by your supervisor that it was perfectly fine for you to disregard no trespassing signs, fences, locked gates, etc.? So if someone is a federal government employee, they can go anywhere they want? Yeah, no wonder there is hostility.

  5. anonymous Says:

    Every city/town is different – who’s to say what response we’ll get from a person?

  6. anon Says:

    My LCO has disconnected most of it’s telephone lines – only 2 available lines out of a previous 10 to 15. “You have reached a number that is disconnected or is no longer in service”. The last CL and CLA for my crew were not called back for Vacant/Delete or Field Verification.

  7. anon Says:

    AOL’s Confession of a Census Worker – June 9, 2010.

  8. Anonymous Says:

    @Bobby J

    Census employees have the right to approach the front door of a housing unit.

  9. nottrespassing Says:

    We were told that we can go to homes with “no trespassing” and “no soliciting” signs. Being agents of the census, we are allowed to go to people’s doors, not cross the threshold to enter the house, but must remain in view outside a home while interviewing. We aren’t soliciting anything, and as agents of the government, since the government technically owns the land, how can we be in trespass?

  10. anonymous Says:

    I don’t understand why some people are “censoring” comments on this site! Just let people speak their “two cents”!

  11. CLA Dave Says:

    Knocking on strangers’ doors can be risky. To put the resident at ease, it’s best to take a step or two back after knocking or ringing the bell. When someone opens the door to find someone right there in their face, they can get defensive and uncooperative, even hostile. Standing back from the door a bit makes you appear less threatening. An added bonus is this: If the door swings open and Leatherface comes after you, you’ve got a two step head start. :)

  12. California FOS Says:

    “In a rural part of California’s Nevada County northeast of Sacramento, two census workers told authorities that a man ordered them off his land. He mentioned his submachine gun, then followed them down the drive with a crossbow in hand. No charges were brought against the resident, the sheriff’s department said.” WHY THE HELL NOT???? This criminal is guilty of a felony that carries a maximum 20-year sentence in a Federal prison!

    Assuming they were properly reported up the chain, 2 of those 376 incidents happened to my enumerators in my FOSD. If VDC involves reinterviewing folks who were less than pleased to see us the first time (and/or the second, third, etc., time) around, I expect the number of these types of incidents to increase during this next phase. Anyone in any type of supervisory role over our field workers has a moral and legal obligation to ensure the safety of their employees, and that includes INSISTING that the appropriate criminal charges are filed against respondents who VIOLATE THE LAW.

    See http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/718/usc_sec_18_00000111—-000-.html

    § 111. Assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers or employees

    (a) In General.— Whoever—

    (1) forcibly assaults, resists, opposes, impedes, intimidates, or interferes with any person designated in section 1114 of this title while engaged in or on account of the performance of official duties; or

    (2) forcibly assaults or intimidates any person who formerly served as a person designated in section 1114 on account of the performance of official duties during such person’s term of service,
    shall, where the acts in violation of this section constitute only simple assault, be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both, and where such acts involve physical contact with the victim of that assault or the intent to commit another felony, be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both.

    (b) Enhanced Penalty.— Whoever, in the commission of any acts described in subsection (a), uses a deadly or dangerous weapon (including a weapon intended to cause death or danger but that fails to do so by reason of a defective component) or inflicts bodily injury, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

  13. lawyer Says:

    Holy shit, am I reading this right? The Census Bureau has been telling its workers to ignore no trespassing signs? Are you told that census takers are allowed to disregard no trespassing signs because you are “federal government employees?” Do they tell you there’s something in Title 13 that exempts census workers from trespassing laws? Let’s say somebody’s front door is 30-40 feet away from a no trespassing sign on the front of the lawn. Are you instructed to go ignore the sign? Do that in New York, and you are guilty of trespassing. If there’s a closed fence, it’s criminal trespassing. It does not matter that you work for the federal government. I can’t believe a writer for the Washington Post thinks federal employees are allowed to ignore no-trespassing signs. I can only assume a census bureau spokesperson told him that.

    MORE importantly though, is this: whether or not there is a “census exception” to trespassing laws, Bobby J is right, none of this is unexpected. The bureau knew full well going into Census 2010 that census workers were going to be attacked, because it happened in 2000. People were shot, stabbed, attacked by dogs, etc. The woman who was attacked by the pit bull this year was lucky, she only lost some fingers. In 2000 a census worker was attacked and killed by a pack of dogs – they were still chewing on her bones when the police got there. Please tell me they warned you.

    It does not matter that it’s RARE. It doesn’t matter that most census workers are not attacked. The question is, is it “foreseeable?” Is it foreseeable that, if you send 600,000 government census workers across the country, ignoring no-trespassing signs, some of them would face this kind of violence? The answer is yes – of course it’s foreseeable; it happens every census.

    So the question then becomes, were you warned? Were you protected in any way? Did they train you to deal with dogs and knife-wielding maniacs? Was that part of your “verbatim” training?

  14. nottrespassing Says:

    M2C has a link to a searchable pdf of the D-590 manual. You can see all of the safety information we receive, primarily in Chapter 5.

    Safety training included descriptions of how to tell if a dog is friendly or not. We are instructed via the manual to obey “beware of dog” signs. Verbally, we were told that trespass/solicitation signs do not apply to us.

    Knife-gun-blowtorch-bat-crossbow-table-wielding maniacs who rip up forms, flush them, kidnap you and lock you in a closet, carjack you or gun you down—–no, I can’t recall that ever coming up. However, there was training on how to report an assault. I expected and received quite a bit of verbal vomit in my direction while enumerating. Given the political climate, not surprised, but still difficult to deal with.

    We are not allowed to carry weapons, nor are we allowed to report crimes, unless we are the victim. The latter, irks me from a moral standpoint, as depending on the crime, I don’t know what I’d do. Fortunately, that never came up for me.

    My favorite line:

    “Wear comfortable walking shoes. These shoes may come in handy should there be a need to run.”

  15. lawyer Says:

    Thanks for pointing out that link, I never noticed it before. Is it read to the workers during training?

    I’m going to read it, but I have to ask: You’re not allowed to report crimes? Huh?

  16. lawyer Says:

    By the way, my favorite line is:

    “Decennial CIRT will contact designated LCO (LCOM), RCC (RD, ARCMs, and LSC) and HQ (TMO DOTS, and PII and Security) staff, notifying them of the reported incident.”

  17. Jax Enumerator Says:

    Lawyer, we were told to not to try to bypass a closed gate. If it’s just a “no trespassing” sign in the yard, we were told it’s like a mailman putting mail in a mailbox by the door. I don’t think it’s trespassing just to approach someone’s house to ring the doorbell anyway unless there is a closed gate, but I could be wrong. We were told that if someone tells us to leave, to do so immediately. I only encountered one house with a sign during NRFU. I had my CLA go with me to that house because it was back off the road a little way and people who post “no trespassing” signs in suburban areas tend to be unstable anyways.

  18. nottrespassing Says:

    In order to maintain confidentiality, if we are on duty and we witness a crime, we are not allowed to report it. (i.e. if we see a meth lab or a pot growing op, or somehow find out that someone is in the country illegally, it’s like we never saw it, as we aren’t there to judge or be the police.)

    How it irks me morally is, if I see someone being attacked, abused, or murdered, I’d want to report *that* crime, or take some action to protect that victim’s life. But, thankfully, it never came up.

  19. nottrespassing Says:

    Regarding training: In addition to the D-590, we also have a workbook, and a manual more specific to our given operation. The trainers have a script, which is based on these manuals. If we were not read it verbatim out loud, time was given for us to read it during training, and we had to pass a test later on.

  20. Enumerate this Says:

    Trespassing laws vary from state to state. It’s impossible to generalize about them. That’s true for the Post reporter, for census management and for us here.

    That said, *generally speaking* “no trespassing” signs don’t mean much — especially when the visitor plainly has a legitimate purpose. A census employee and the fedex guy are a couple examples.

    I am not a lawyer (I doubt “lawyer” is either) but I have some practical knowledge of and courtroom experience with criminal trespass.

    In Iowa, for example, trespassing takes place only when “Entering upon or in property without the express permission of the owner, lessee, or person in lawful possession with the intent to commit a public offense, to use, remove therefrom, alter, damage, harass….” [Verbiage about hunting redacted]

    In Iowa, trespassing also takes place when “Entering or remaining upon or in property without justification after being notified or requested to abstain from entering or to remove or vacate therefrom by the owner, lessee, or person in lawful possession….” [Iowa Code 716.7]

    To summarize, in Iowa trespassing takes place only when there is ill intent or when remaining on property after being asked to leave. A census worker is certainly permitted to walk past a “no trespassing” sign and knock on a door because he has a legitimate purpose. At the same time, when the owner asks him to leave he has to leave.

    Of course, as I said, the law varies greatly from state to state. Some big cities (NYC, SF) have waiver programs where building managers can post waivers allowing police to arrest whoever they want from alcoves, doorways and similar spaces. Other states, live Pennsylvania, have varying degrees of trespass — trespassing, defiant trespassing, etc.

    Trespassing laws are *generally* applied in commonsense ways by police officers, prosecutors and judges. I don’t think a census worker who walks past a “no trespassing” sign has much to worry about. A census worker who insists on sticking around after being asked to leave is probably pushing his luck.

  21. Enumerate this Says:

    Postscript: The lion’s share of trespass case law concerns hunting and fishing. Most of the remainder concerns livestock and vagrants/squatters/homeless people. Only a tiny fraction concerns regular folks knocking on a door for a job.

  22. Bobby J Says:

    Enumerate this: I don’t know about Iowa, but in some states the “no trespassing” sign IS the notice. You don’t have to “ask” a person to leave because the sign did that for you. That’s why it’s there.

    I also know many states have a “purple stick” or “purple stake” law. A painted purple stake, fencepost or mark on a tree has the same force of law as a fence – if you go past it, you’re automatically trespassing just as if you had climbed a fence or a locked gate. In my state there is no difference between rural and urban/suburban property with regards to the purple stick. If there’s one in the flower bed next to the front porch and you walk past it and ring my doorbell, you might as well have climbed my back fence and started pounding on the back door – same thing as far as the law is concerned. I’d be willing to bet that not 5% of the enumerators in my area have any clue whatsoever what a purple stick means in this state.

  23. Enumerate this Says:

    @Bobby J: I don’t know about your state or about purple sticks. As you also noted, the law varies from state to state. But *generally* speaking trespassing laws don’t contemplate workers merely knocking on a door or leaving an NV for legitimate business or governmental purposes.

    I doubt anyone out there can cite a single case of a person being convicted of trespassing for merely knocking on a door while on legitimate government business. If anyone does, I’ll mail them a Census 2010 keychain.

    In an ideal world (har har) someone in the Commerce department counsel’s office would have researched the issue and provided definitive state-by-state guidance. Instead we’re stuck with speculation and conjecture from people like you and me, as well as from our supervisors who have zero legal knowledge. Talk about the blind leading the blind….

  24. nottrespassing Says:

    “Groves urged residents to answer their doors if a census worker knocks. He noted that federal law allows census takers to bypass “no trespassing” signs because they are “fulfilling their public duty.” ”

    – AOL News: “Census Hits Back at Conservative Filmmaker’s ‘Expose’” Andrea Stone

  25. Walt Yogati Says:

    Enumerate this:
    Why do you doubt that I’m a lawyer? I got my JD in 1995; spent the next 12/13 years as a civil litigator. Around 2 years ago, I got tired of fighting with assholes all the time, which is unavoidable as a litigator, so I went back to school to get a Masters degree. I haven’t finished that program yet, I still have one research paper I haven’t turned in: it’s about the census. Anyway, I’m a lawyer. But are you an enumerator? I don’t know – I’m usually pretty good at recognizing senior-management census bureau vacuousness when I read it. You show all the classic signs:
    1. You’re lying.
    You don’t know anything about trespass law. Iowa law does not limit trespassing to circumstances involving ill intent or to refusals to get off the property after being asked to do so.” You quoted the statute wrong – left off the word “or.” Popped right out of the middle of a sentence, completely changing its meaning. Instead of requiring intent to commit a public offense OR intent to do as little as using something or placing something – “anything animate or inanimate” – on the property, your version makes it seem like a census worker can, in Iowa, ignore no-trespassing signs, without worrying about violating the law, because as long as they don’t intend to commit a public offense on the property, there’s no trespassing – unless he is asked to leave and refuses to do so. That was your basic point about iowa, right? Here’s the real law, if you’re interested: https://www.cityofmarion.org/f8web/?uf=.//Mayor%20and%20City%20Council/City%20Code/Chapter%2042%20Public%20and%20Private%20Property.pdf

    here’s another link, if it helps: http://www.grimesiowa.com/pdf/code/public-privateproperty.pdf

    2. You’re being irrational
    Tell me something. Why would somebody come here pretending to be a lawyer, telling people they’ve been lied to about the law, and that their rights have been trampled on by their bosses in a particularly dangerous manner, if the person isn’t a real lawyer and doesn’t actually feel that way? What’s my motive for that? Does this happen a lot, in your experience? Phony lawyers coming out of nowhere, telling people their bosses are fucking them over? Why would an enumerator, upon being told, by a self-proclaimed lawyer, that their bosses have put their well being at risk, immediately accuse the lawyer of being phony? Isn’t it in your best interest to, at least, discuss it a little bit before deciding I’m lying to you? Are you sure you understood what I was saying? Was I telling people they were at risk of being arrested for trespassing?
    3. You’re contradicting yourself
    Right after saying it’s impossible to generalize about trespassing laws, you proceed to do so, over and over.
    4. You failed to address the issue
    Nothing says “Census Bureau” like ignoring the substance of an issue. I say census workers were bound to get hurt, and you say they’re not going to be arrested.
    5. You don’t give a rats ass about the workers
    You say “I doubt anyone out there can cite a single case of a person being convicted of trespassing for merely knocking on a door while on legitimate government business. If anyone does, I’ll mail them a Census 2010 keychain.” The danger is not that they will be arrested for trespassing, the danger is that they will be KILLED. The post article described people launching into tirades, throwing tables at people upon the mere sight of a census badge – no ignoring no-trespassing signs necessary. The word “census” comes out of one guy’s mouth, and he’s attacked with an aluminum bat. The workers are spat on, cursed at, attacked with pickaxes, crossbows, hammers, lawn mowers, patio tables, and packs of snarling dogs. But you “don’t think a census worker who walks past a “no trespassing” sign has much to worry about.” Meanwhile, the bureau is telling everybody not to worry about those no-trespassing signs you see every once in a while. Walk right past them. If a guy starts spitting on you, tell him you work for the census bureau and are therefore allowed to enter his property without his permission. That won’t improve his attitude but it might speed things up a little.

    If you really are an enumerator, please don’t make me waste any more time trying to convince you that you are wrong about the law. Just tell me – why did you provide that false version of the Iowa law? Are you the person that falsified it? Or did somebody give that text to you, telling you it was the law? Were they lying to you, or were you lying to us?

  26. Lawyer Says:

    Sorry – that “walt yogati” was me

  27. Lawyer Says:

    I hope I didn’t just accidentally post this twice. Sorry if I did:

    Enumerate this:
    Why do you doubt that I’m a lawyer? I got my JD in 1995; spent the next 12/13 years as a civil litigator. Around 2 years ago, I got tired of fighting with assholes all the time, which is unavoidable as a litigator, so I went back to school to get a Masters degree. I haven’t finished that program yet, I still have one research paper I haven’t turned in: it’s about the census. Anyway, I’m a lawyer. But are you an enumerator? I don’t know – I’m usually pretty good at recognizing senior-management census bureau vacuousness when I read it. You show all the classic signs:
    1. You’re lying.
    You don’t know anything about trespass law. Iowa law does not limit trespassing to circumstances involving ill intent or to refusals to get off the property after being asked to do so.” You quoted the statute wrong – left off the word “or.” Popped right out of the middle of a sentence, completely changing its meaning. Instead of requiring intent to commit a public offense OR intent to do as little as using something or placing something – “anything animate or inanimate” – on the property, your version makes it seem like a census worker can, in Iowa, ignore no-trespassing signs, without worrying about violating the law, because as long as they don’t intend to commit a public offense on the property, there’s no trespassing – unless he is asked to leave and refuses to do so. That was your basic point about iowa, right?
    2. You’re being irrational
    Tell me something. Why would somebody come here pretending to be a lawyer, telling people they’ve been lied to about the law, and that their rights have been trampled on by their bosses in a particularly dangerous manner, if the person isn’t a real lawyer and doesn’t actually feel that way? What’s my motive for that? Does this happen a lot, in your experience? Phony lawyers coming out of nowhere, telling people their bosses are fucking them over? Why would an enumerator, upon being told, by a self-proclaimed lawyer, that their bosses have put their wellbeing at risk, immediately accuse the lawyer of being phony? Isn’t it in your best interest to, at least, discuss it a little bit before deciding I’m lying to you? Are you under the impression that you understood what I was saying? Do you think you addressed the issue I was raising? Do you think I was telling people they were at risk of being arrested for trespassing? That brings me to sign # 3
    3. You’re contradicting yourself
    Right after saying it’s impossible to generalize about trespassing laws, you proceed to do so, over and over.
    4. You failed to address the issue
    Nothing says “Census Bureau” like ignoring the substance of an issue. I say the bureau’s policies are likely to put census workers in the hospital, and your response is that they won’t be sent to jail. Do you understand the difference between being beaten with a baseball bat and being arrested?
    5. You don’t give a rats ass about the workers
    You say “I doubt anyone out there can cite a single case of a person being convicted of trespassing for merely knocking on a door while on legitimate government business. If anyone does, I’ll mail them a Census 2010 keychain.” The danger is not that they will be arrested for trespassing, the danger is that they will be KILLED. The post article described people launching into tirades, throwing tables at people upon the mere sight of a census badge – no ignoring no-trespassing signs necessary. The word “census” comes out of one guy’s mouth, and he’s attacked with an aluminum bat. The workers are spat on, cursed at, attacked with pickaxes, crossbows, hammers, lawn mowers, patio tables, and packs of snarling dogs. But you “don’t think a census worker who walks past a “no trespassing” sign has much to worry about.” Meanwhile, the bureau is telling everybody not to worry about those no-trespassing signs you see every once in a while. Walk right past them. If a guy starts spitting on you, tell him you work for the census bureau and are therefore allowed to enter his property without his permission. That won’t improve his attitude but it might speed things up a little.

  28. somewhere in the census Says:

    “lawyer Says:
    June 21st, 2010 at 1:15 am
    Holy shit, am I reading this right? The Census Bureau has been telling its workers to ignore no trespassing signs?”

    LOL you are not an attorney. Any number of classes persons have the right to totally disregard no trespassing signs. Before pretending to be an attorney at least peruse findlaw or lexis on trespass! If you know anything about the law you would know how to check all the precedents for postal employees, who also can ignore trespass signs, as can, of course, census workers in the course of their duties.

    You are not a lawyer. do you know how one can tell? You did not give a SINGLE cite .

  29. anonymous Says:

    I believe Lawyer.

  30. notsoamused Says:

    My LCO advised us enumerators to disregard “No Trespass” signs. We were told that as federal employees we are not subject to trespass laws. If we encountered a gated home we were to leave an NV on the gate. If a homeowner asked us to leave we were to just quietly leave. If someone refused to respond to the the EQ questions even if angry we were supposed to try to convince them to answer the questions and then cite Title 18 law. I am so happy this miserable job came to an end. It was the worst job I have ever had.

  31. Enumerate this Says:

    @lawyer: I CAN HAZ MORE PARAGRAPH BREAKS?

  32. Enumerate this Says:

    @lawyer: I didn’t read all that. Too many words. Your legal writing professor (??) is rolling over in his grave.

  33. Glori Says:

    Walt Yogati – I know of a census employee who was kicked by an emotionally unstable, belligerent co worker simply because she told her it was time to leave a meeting (the woman was acting weird and would not take no for an answer). It has been a month and they have not paid the medical bills and seem to question my friend as if she were at fault. My friend feels like they are trying to deny her claim even though she was legitimately injured. Its a shame how people are put at risk like that and then they don’t even want to cover the medical bills. She is considering going to the media.

    Proper hiring practices, screening techniques, training and probation periods where people are observed on the job would weed out those who should not be out there representing the Federal Government.

    I do not think it is right to tell census employees to trespass even if they have the right to do so. The average person does not care if they have the right, they only care about their right to privacy. Law enforcement should be involved if a person refuses to answer a questionnaire. That or threaten to fine those who refuse to participate. How are you going to send out multiple enumerators to the same house and put them at risk?

  34. Glori Says:

    After hearing about that emotionally unstable woman kicking my friend and other stories of crazy census workers I really am not opening the door to a census worker myself. I have the right to protect myself if the government won’t.

  35. W Says:

    With that stuff all over the news that ACORN and SEIU would be involved in the 2010 census, and the general distaste/distrust of the government, this does not surprise me at all. In addition, with all you see on the news about identity theft and privacy violations, people do not want to give out any information about their neighbors or their neighbors giving any information about them.

    The information required on the census forms goes beyond what the consitiution calls for – i.e., a “count”. There is nothing in the constitution about name, home ownership v. rent, race, age, date of birth, ethnic background, race, etc.

    And let me tell you, with the unkempt look of some of the enumerators
    and their style of dress, and the fact that there is no uniform or photo ID, I can’t blame people for not cooperating or being hostile.

  36. CLA Dave Says:

    re: There is nothing in the constitution about name, home ownership v. rent, race, age, date of birth, ethnic background, race, etc.

    Yeah, but the Constitution says it is to be done the way Congress “shall by law direct.” (Art 1 Sect 2)

  37. enumerator Says:

    W – June 25th – is correct about the “unkempt look of some of the enumerators”. Apt. managers, respondents have complained to me about previous enumerators – sloppy appearance, “gangsta” clothing complete with keychains hanging down pockets, halter tops with no bra, men wearing tanks, etc. No badges, no bags, just carrying EQ paperwork! Some enumerators strayed from training class dress codes. Also, unprofessional behavior from enumerators all the way up to administrators!

  38. Peter S.Mulshine Says:

    The Census is permitted by the U.S.Constitution to conduct the gathering of information to accurately record statistics to aid our Nation.No trespassing signs will not stop genuine Us.Census Takers.As an American you should comply.The Info kept is really numbers,.totals.Anyone that thinks they can threaten harm on a Federal Official is wrong.They will be arrested.

  39. Peter S.Mulshine Says:

    The U.S.Constitution ALWAYS TRUMPS,,,STATE &LOCAL LAW.JUST ASK GEN.LEE.MR.ROCKET SCIENTIST LAWYER.

  40. Kathleen Says:

    I attended enumerator training with about 20 other people. Most of us were middle-aged. Many were retired and many were retired military. There were several Hispanics as there are many largely Spanish-speaking neighborhoods in our area. I was impressed with my co-workers and with my trainers. Everyone kept a professional demeanor. We also kept a positive attitude. We were doing an important job for our country and earning a fairly decent income at the same time. We were told that “No Trespassing” signs did not apply to us, but that we could not climb locked gates. We were told that there was a chance that someone would pull a gun on us and we should just put our hands up, say “sorry to bother you, I’ll just go back to my car now” and back off as quickly as possible. We were also warned about vicious dogs and told not to look them in the eye and to back off slowly. Though there was some risk to it, we found that MOST people (and dogs) are friendly, reasonable and cooperative. If you spend much time reading blogs, you can lose sight of that, so it was an affirmation to me that this is still a great country in spite of the few hateful people spewing fear and misinformation. You know who you are, and thank goodness you are in the minority!!!

  41. Jack Says:

    A real nut tried to charge at me twice and told me that he would find my family and kill us. I only identified myself…never said another word. I stood my ground so he didn’t attack me, but it scared me. The Census did nothing. They referred it to the local police and I declined to press charges because who was going to protect my family against an insane man? Isn’t this a federal issue and where is the FBI?

  42. bill Says:

    the manual says to not go past “no trespassing signs”, and you would listen to what a super tells you and disregard the written manual? i was a “doorknocker” for 4.5 weeks, after one week in the field i had twice the experience as both of my bosses, cl + cl asst.. there was much conflicting information from our superiors.
    now, July 1st, i’m in the vacant + delete confirm operation, again conflicting rules + directions. we were told to work the july 4th weekend, pushing us to return to addresses on sat/sun/mon holiday period.
    the white collar idiots don’t realize the anti govt sentiment that i experience in the previous 4 weeks, otherwise they wouldn’t force our interviews on the public over a national holiday.
    i ran a profitable + successful business for 28 years, that i sold several years ago. if i ran it the way the census is run, it wouldn’t have lasted very long… believe me they fuck up a simple operation like counting people, god help us with the tough issues. i’m still observing the amazement. my science degree makes this hard to watch..

  43. vickey Says:

    The trespassing conflict will continue because the Government and Their agents do not respect the choice and right of privacy that some inherently need to protect. As long as others believe they are privileged to bulldoze over the rights of others, we will not be a “free” people. All conflict in life is over values. While some value their privacy, many more value Conformity. The price we all pay for Conformity is the loss of freedom. Laws are created and enforced to protect Conformity, not individual rights, thus independent individuals suffer. It is highly unlikely to change, considering the lack of brotherly love and mental laziness of the mass consciousness.

  44. Dawinda Jones Says:

    My husband was chased off of property in a very affluent neighborhood, in one of the richest counties in the country. He was later told by a neighbor that the resident of that property was afraid that he would discover that they had numerous illegal aliens residing there as domestic servants