Census takers to start followup July 30 with non-responding households in Snohomish County

A census taker. (Photo courtesy U.S. Census Bureau)

This Thursday, July 30, census takers in Snohomish County will begin to follow up with households that have not yet responded to the 2020 Census.

The current self-response rate in Snohomish County is 70.9%, compared with a national response rate of 62.4%. Washington’s response rate is 67.7%. Among South Snohomish County cities, Brier continues to lead the way with a 86.3% response rate. Edmonds has  a 78.2% rate, Mountlake Terrace is 72.9% and Lynnwood is 68.7%.

The Census Bureau will need to visit the remaining addresses to collect responses in person.

Households can still respond now by completing and mailing back the paper questionnaire they received, by responding online at 2020census.gov, or by phone at 844-330-2020. Households can also respond online or by phone in one of 13languages and find assistance in many more. Those that respond will not need to be visited to obtain their census response.

Census takers will follow local public health guidelines when they visit. If masks are required in the area, census takers will wear them. Census takers must complete a virtual COVID-19 training on social distancing protocols and other health and safety guidance before beginning their work in neighborhoods.

Census takers are hired from local communities. All census takers speak English, and many are bilingual. If a census taker does not speak the householder’s language, the household may request a return visit from a census taker who does. Census takers will also have materials on hand to help identify the household’s language.

If no one is home when the census taker visits, the census taker will leave a notice of their visit with information about how to respond online, by phone or by mail. People are encouraged to cooperate with census takers and ensure that everyone who was living in their household as of April 1, 2020, is counted.

Census takers can be easily identified by a valid government ID badge with their photograph, a U.S. Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date on the badge. To confirm a census taker’s identity, the public may contact their regional census center to speak with a Census Bureau representative.

The U.S. Constitution mandates a census of the population every 10 years. The goal of the 2020 Census is to count everyone who lives in the United States on April 1, 2020 (Census Day). Census statistics are used to determine the number of seats each state holds in the U.S. House of Representatives and informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years.

For more information, visit 2020census.gov.


2 Replies to “Census takers to start followup July 30 with non-responding households in Snohomish County”

  1. Thanks for posting this update about the 2020 Census! I wanted to add a little bit more info to the great details above. I signed up to be a Census taker and went to my first training session last week. The rest of the very thorough training now is on line – really helps me appreciate what parents and kids are going through, “Click next,” “Now you will learn,” “In the next module…” What I want to stress is that at the training session, we had to take an oath of confidentiality. Except for already public information, we are never allowed to disclose any details from the questions we ask each person. NEVER! There is a 5 year prison sentence and up to $250,000 fine for doing so. Protecting data is paramount.
    Census data as numbers, not associated with people, IS used to allocated seats in the House of Representatives and money for communities. The details about where people lived in 2020, who they lived with, ages, occupations, and other questions is not made public for 72 years. Which brings me to the other reason I’m chiming in here and hitting the streets shortly. Genealogy is a hobby and passion. I’ve spent hundreds of hours pouring through census data going back into the 1700’s and even earlier than that for some other countries. I’ve been able to document how one of my best friends is in fact related to that great great +++ grandfather and mother who came over on the Mayflower. I also was able to help find living relatives for someone who didn’t know anyone on their father’s side. The 1940 census shows that my mom and dad were both living at Bellevue Hospital in NYC – she was a nursing student, he was in intern. And lastly, my favorite – that my Sicilian grandfather was only 18 years old when he came to the US. He was going to live with his brother and that he had a whole $10 in his pocket. So, please fill out your Census if you haven’t done so already – it’s easy, fast, no questions about country of origin now or exactly how much money you have in your pocket. It will help our community and region receive federal funds for today’s residents but it will also help our descendants know more about their own family come 2092!


  2. Maggie, Thanks for clarifying the details about the census takers and the importance of having the data for our needs now and in the future.


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