The Census: They Count By Night

They Count By Night

How many homeless people are there in America? Who are they? On the night of March 20, the U.S. Census Bureau will try to find out with a nationwide sweep of shelters, public parks, subways and sidewalk heating grates. Enumerators -- the bureaucratic euphemism for headcounters -- have been warned not to search parked cars or Dumpsters and not to enter abandoned buildings; nor may they question people who are sleeping or obviously disoriented.

There is concern that the project will somehow demean the homeless. That's beside the point, reply city officials. The homeless will be among the first , to...

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