And so, it Began …

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Written by: Director Robert Groves

Tomorrow, Saturday, January 23, I start my journey to Alaska, to begin the 2010 Census. The enumeration must start early in Alaska because those villages still dependent on subsistence hunting and fishing disperse at the beginning of the spring thaw. We must start early to have a successful count.

We begin in the Inupiat village of Noorvik, a little above the Arctic Circle. It’s a village of about 600 or so people. (Outside temperature at this writing, -26 degrees Fahrenheit) We arrive on Sunday, January 24. Thanks to our gracious hosts we’ll be able to sleep Sunday night in their beautiful school’s classrooms. The first enumerated household will take place early afternoon on Monday, January 25, marking the real official start of the 2010 Census.

While we are bringing quite a crew to document the symbolism of the moment, it is a real beginning, with census takers completing their work within about a week’s time. Following our policy regarding American Indians and Alaska Natives, we first consult with the village leader to be respectful of the village culture and later will ask him to review the list of housing units to make sure we haven’t left off a unit. To do this the village leader takes the oath of confidentiality that applies to every census taker as well.

I’ll try to post other insights from this event as it transpires, to give all a sense of how we do the enumeration.

It’s starting!

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3 Responses to And so, it Began …

  1. When you are done with Alaska, take some time in Florida. There are many new people down here that need to take the Census.

  2. alex says:

    Thanks for wasting everybodies money trying to make everyone feel good about butting into thier lives

  3. Sean O'Connell says:

    I just read that the census bureau is going to spend 2.5 MILLION dollars to run an ad during the Superbowl. I am in absolute disbelief!!
    Do you people have ANY idea what is going on in this country????
    I cannot find the words for the rage I feel toward you and every other government agency…you truly do not have a clue as to how money is made. You spend it like it really does grow on trees. Government workers live in another world…if you were held accountable for your actions none of you would not have a JOB! You better stay in government service (where incompetence is not even grounds for being fired).
    One PISSED off American.

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