Census workers now going door-to-door

Sep 18, 2020

Credit Courtesy census.gov

The U.S. Census Bureau says it has about 15-hundred workers going door-to-door in Detroit, trying to reach those who have not yet responded online, by phone or by mail.

Tim Olson is the bureau’s associate director of field operations. He says some people aren’t home when census takers arrive. Others say they’re too busy and some are afraid to give personal information to the government.

“Once we start what I call the door-knocking phase, and there’s a real person from the local community who is a census taker, they knock on the door," said Olson. "They look like the neighborhood, they talk like the neighborhood, wherever that is. We generally get an incredibly high cooperation rate.”

About half of all households in Detroit have responded to the census, which is supposed to end on September 30th. Civil rights groups are in federal court trying to extend the deadline to the end of October. Michigan’s overall response rate is over 92 percent.