West Suburban Patriots

an independent Tea Party group in DuPage County, IL

American Community Survey (ACS)

West Suburban Patriots is an independent TEA Party organization – part of the nationwide Taxed-Enough-Already movement.  We are a large group that is frequently in the public eye, and so it is not unusual for people to reach out to us when something doesn’t seem right and they do not know where else to turn. 

Recently, we heard from an individual who received the very intrusive “American Community Survey” (ACS). She wanted to know if we had ever heard of it (Yes) and if we could tell her what to do (told her what we know – she was not the first to call about it).  She scanned in both the envelope and the survey and suggested that the public needs to know about this.  It is very intimidating!


On the outer envelope is says “YOUR RESPONSE IS REQUIRED BY LAW.”  

The original letter told them to go on-line to fill out the survey and that if they did not do that one would be mailed to the home.  After it arrived, they were very disturbed by the content of the questions.  She contacted us, and scanned it in to share:  American Community Survey booklet redacted.pdf


From another person who had received this twice, we know that they first received it at their vacation home.  They did not fill that one out.  Someone from the census bureau showed up and was very persistent.  Eventually, they were allowed to refuse since it was not a primary residence for anyone.

Then the same couple received one at their primary residence.  This is strange because the information about the ACS says it is sent to “resident” at randomly selected addresses. Eventually after they had not responded on-line or via mail to this one, someone from the census bureau showed up at the door.  This census worker was satisfied with answers to only a few general questions.  Based on our investigation, Congress has not funded the ACS enforcement mechanism for years. Ideally the entire survey should be scrapped.  Take a look at this survey and notice just how intrusive it is.

(Link above)


In addition to the normal census questions of who lives there

  • name,
  • gender,
  • age,
  • race, and
  • relation to person number one,

It ask about

  • the age and size of the house,
  • number of total rooms,
  • number of bedrooms,
  • if you sell agriculture products,
  • have hot and cold running water,
  • a shower or tub,
  • refrigerator,
  • telephone or cell phone,
  • internet access,
  • computer (types)
  • number of vehicles…

How much you spend on utilities?

  • electric,
  • gas,
  • water & sewer,
  • coal or other heating fuels

Do you receive government assistance (e.g. food stamps)?

For renters:

  • How much is rent?
  • and what does that include?

For home owners:

  • estimated property value,
  • annual property taxes,
  • insurance premiums,
  • mortgage payments,
  • home equity loan info…

Then back to each person:

  • Where was he born?
  • Is he a citizen?
  • Education questions,
  • Ethnicity of ancestors,
  • Languages spoken,
  • If less than one year at this residence where did he live prior to this?
  • type of health insurance,
  • Any hearing, vision, physical, mental or emotional disabilities? 
  • Marital status,
  • Has the marital status changed in the last year?
  • How many times has he been married?
  • Has she given birth in the last year?
  • Is she responsible for raising grandchildren? If so, how long?
  • Did this person serve in the armed forces?  When? Any service related disability?

Questions about work including:

  • How does he commute to work?
  • What time does he leave for work?
  • And when does he get home?
  • Has she been job hunting?
  • What were this person's most important activities or duties at work?

Sources of income & how much:

  • Work
  • Dividends and interest
  • Social security, pensions,
  • Welfare
  • Etc.

Repeat for each individual residing at this residence.  

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