Remember when you were in elementary school and the teacher would take attendance by calling names and you would answer “here”? Well, that roll call still happens daily in schools, only now it is conducted via electronic chips embedded in the students’ foreheads and chip readers installed in the classroom doorways.
Just kidding! But it is time to take attendance in Okanogan County, and we all need to stand up and be counted. The way we get counted is through the decennial process known as “the census,” where the federal government attempts to get an accurate count of the number of people living in a given area, in order to allocate state and federal resources. In order to count those people, other people need to walk around and knock on doors, asking “How many people live here?” and recording the numbers.
Unlike in the olden days, the counters do not even have to add up those totals; they just have to record them. These people — the counters — have the coolest job titles; they’re called “enumerators.” How might my career track have been different had I been able to list “enumerator” on my resume? Alas, I will never know.
It’s only once every decade that you get a chance to put “enumerator” on your resume, and lucky for you, this is one of those years. Because the Census Bureau is hiring! If you’re available for 20-40 hours a week, with a flexible schedule to accommodate some daytime, nighttime, and/or evening work, and if you want to make $16/hour starting pay, including training, plus 58 cents per mile driven, then an enumerator job in the Methow Valley might be just perfect for you.
You won’t have to knock on every door — just the doors of households who do not take advantage of the mail, internet or postcard means of responding to the briefest census questionnaire in history. In other words, the quirky and spontaneous people, who like to leave things up to chance.
Those interested in helping the Methow Valley garner appropriate resources while making a little money on the side can apply online at 2020census.gov/jobs or meet a recruiter for application assistance at either of the valley’s libraries: Feb. 22 in Twisp, 10 a.m–1 p.m.; Feb. 22 in Winthrop, 1:30–3:30 p.m.; Feb. 29 in Twisp, 10 a.m.–1 p.m., Feb. 29 in Winthrop 1:30–3:30 p.m.. High school students are encouraged to apply, as long as they will turn 18 by April.
Living in a rural community that can feel very isolated from the “outside world,” it’s easy to get overlooked or short-changed. Getting accurate count of how many we are will help us get our fair share of the resources our taxes support.