Census Workers Paid Late

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Close-up of a person's hand knocking on a door

    Some temporary census workers are experiencing delayed payments from Uncle Sam.

    The workers were hired by the U.S. Census Bureau to knock on the doors of people who didn't send in or didn’t get a census form by mail.

    One woman said her daughter started work on April 27 and didn’t get paid until well into June. She spoke on behalf of her daughter, who did not want to be identified in fear of retaliation.

    Census workers had to sign confidentiality agreements when they started working and were warned not to talk about their jobs or post anything on blogs or on Facebook, the woman said.

    “People at the Mesquite payroll office told me that there are hundreds from their office alone who haven't been paid yet,” the woman wrote on June 4.

    Census Bureau spokesmen said those numbers seemed inflated but were unable to provide an exact number of those affected.  

    There are about 45,840 census workers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area alone, according to data posted on the bureau’s website Wednesday. At the peak of the census door-knocking, there were more than 59,000 workers.

    "With more than 549,000 census takers knocking on doors [nationally], there have been some cases where some workers are claiming that they haven't been paid on time," Census Bureau spokesman Michael Cook said in an e-mailed statement. 

    It could be due to many different circumstances, such as administrative and clerical errors, the bureau said.

    “The Census Bureau is taking every step possible to ensure that workers get paid on time,” Cook said.

    The Citizen Times newspaper in Asheville, N.C., also reported delayed worker payments. The workers, who make $11.50 an hour, reported late, delayed and even partial payments back in May, the paper reported.

    Texas’ response rate for the mail in forms was below the national average, according to government statistics. Sixty-nine percent of Texans mailed back their forms, compared with 72 percent nationally. 

    Rockwall County was the top responding county with a 77 percent response rate, followed by Collin County (76 percent), Denton County (74 percent) and Tarrant County (72 percent). Dallas County had a 65 percent response. 


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