U.S. Census Bureau workers in Alaska will still approach properties and homes where signs warning against trespassing are posted, officials said.
The federal agency said workers canvassing communities to obtain resident information for the 2020 census are not bound by the warnings, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported Thursday.
“The Census Bureau is allowed to disregard trespassing signs because we are by law required to give everyone the opportunity to respond to the census since it is a count mandated by the Constitution,” the bureau said in a statement.
The Census Bureau is the federal government’s largest statistical agency charged with accumulating national population and housing data once every decade. The bureau also conducts an economic census and a census of state and local governments every five years, according to its website.
Census employees in Alaska have been canvassing for about two months. The count in remote populations of the state is scheduled to begin in January, officials said.
Census workers are required to approach all properties but will comply with owners’ requests to leave, said Jeff Bottorff, an Alaska area census manager.
Canvassers who are told to leave will explain why they are there and leave census materials if the recipient wants them before departing, Bottorff said.
“If the homeowner, the residence owner, doesn’t want us there, we’ll leave,” Bottorff said.