With unemployment in California at a record low and the national rate also at its lowest in decades, the Census Bureau is going all-out to line up thousands of temporary workers. It has 5,000 recruiters holding workshops at libraries, colleges and retirement communities. It’s partnering with community groups; advertising on radio, transit and social media; and handing out postcards at street fairs and stores as people line up to shop.
“The decennial census is the largest mobilization of a temporary workforce in peacetime,” said a representative overseeing a census job application workshop at St. Anthony’s. “Enumerators are very crucial positions, and we need lots of them.”
Throughout the Bay Area, the census will need about 12,000 workers. Nationwide, the figure is half a million. That includes some jobs for temporary supervisors, recruiters and clerks. The census hires people as employees, not independent contractors. Workers’ compensation and disability coverage are available, but not health and retirement benefits.
The intermittent jobs pay well compared with retail and restaurant work, ranging from $21 an hour in Solano, Sonoma and Napa counties to $30 an hour in San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara counties — the highest in the nation.
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