2020 CNMI Census launches temporary telephone operations

Posted on May 26 2020

The 2020 Census of the CNMI has officially opened a temporary telephone operations center to enhance its enumeration efforts, and is asking everyone to be on the lookout for a “Notice of Visit” envelope that they will be handing out to homes soon.

In an official video, CNMI Census shared that a census taker will go to a house to hand out a notice of visit, which will contain the information that the receiver needs to provide, when calling in to be interviewed.

“We are asking you to call us to help assure that you are talking to a census taker. The census employees will not call you to do the interview unless you have previously scheduled a time to do so,” the video states.

In addition, Census is assuring that all of its employees will be following the guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to keep everyone safe as the enumeration takes place.

Last May 15, the U.S. Census Bureau said that it is reopening offices in the island areas, including the CNMI, and that “island area census workers are set to resume contacting every household or living quarters to conduct an in-person interview around June 1.”

In-person Census field operations in the CNMI stopped last March 16, following Gov. Ralph DLG Torres’ Executive Order 2020-04, which placed the CNMI under a state of public health emergency for COVID-19, effecting a government shutdown.

Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (Ind-MP) is urging everyone to cooperate with the CNMI Census. “Data collection in the field stopped on March 16 because of the pandemic stay-at-home order. Since then, the Census Bureau has worked with the local office, so it is ready to collect data in a way that protects the health of census staff and the public. We urge everyone to cooperate with this renewed effort,” Sablan said. “When census takers come to your door, maintain social distance and apply the other good health habits we have all learned. But, please, answer their questions. Your personal data is kept confidential. All our information added together, however, will make a big difference in our lives over the next 10 years.”

A census of the population is conducted every 10 years, per the U.S. Constitution. Census statistics are critical as it informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local, and federal lawmakers every year for the next 10 years.

Iva Maurin | Correspondent
Iva Maurin is a communications specialist with environment and community outreach experience in the Philippines and in California. She has a background in graphic arts and is the Saipan Tribune’s community and environment reporter. Contact her at iva_maurin@saipantribune.com
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