Census Jobs and Public Benefits Eligibility

Posted by Pennsylvania Voice on October 1, 2019

From Keystone Counts:

As you may have heard, the Census Bureau is having difficulty finding enough temporary workers to assist in conducting next year’s count. This is particularly troublesome because these workers are needed to help ensure that traditionally “Hard to Count” populations are reached, and if any undercount occurs, it will carry serious implications for Pennsylvania.

Part of the reason that the Census Bureau is having difficulty hiring is that the unemployment rate is so low, but the official employment figures don’t reflect people who are underemployed and may be struggling. It is also possible that many of these folks are avoiding applying for Census jobs because they are concerned about losing government benefits that are helping keep their families afloat.

We are writing to let you know that the PA Department of Human Services, after consulting with Keystone Counts, has just issued new guidance that income derived from temporary Census Bureau employment will not affect eligibility for nearly all forms of government assistance.

PA DHS guidance on Census Jobs and public benefits: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1MdeSYo5I1SMF_hFQtwU6bfewati9MQfk/view

We wanted to make sure you all were aware of this policy so that you could encourage people in your networks to apply for Census jobs. We have developed some guidance on what types of jobs are available, and the application process.

Census jobs hiring gudiance: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1fkoBM94Bfs4SEmAQoVfSoH21Qs_vafy4/view

Studies have shown that the most effective Census outreach workers are those who are parts of the communities in which they will be working, and we would encourage all of you to share both the DHS guidance and our employment guide with anyone in your networks you think might be interested. The work itself is extremely important, but it could also provide a boost to families that may be struggling.

For more information, contact Keystone Counts at jlin@pavoice.org.

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