Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): As the start of the Population and Housing Census nears in St. Kitts and Nevis, field enumerators are preparing for the crucial task ahead by undergoing a series of training sessions organized by the Department of Statistics in the Ministry of Sustainable Development.
In an interview with St. Kitts and Nevis Information Service (SKNIS) on Thursday, March 31, one enumerator, Mrs. Carla Mills-Diamond, said that it was extremely important for her to participate in the Population and Housing Census especially given its significance.
“I became a volunteer for this exercise because I recognize the importance of having statistics. Statistics drive decisions for us. If we want to provide statistics to be a part of any international body it is really important that we have captured that data and we have captured it accurately,” said Mrs. Mills-Diamond.
She noted that the training is vital as it prepares enumerators to face unforeseen challenges.
“I do understand the importance of training because we are going to meet with people with different personalities and for persons who would have had different ways of looking at the Census the process can be intrusive and if you are not properly trained you can meet up on some sensitive aspects that could really make persons uncomfortable,” said Mrs. Mills-Diamond. “So, I think it is quite fitting that we get the training so that when we go into the field we know how to handle certain situations.”
Another enumerator, Craig McDowell, shared similar sentiments, adding that the onus is on the trainees to be professional while in the field.
“We need to be on our p’s and q’s so that we can go out in the field and get the correct information so that the objective of the Census can be met,” said Mr. McDowell. “It is up to us to convince and persuade the individuals to participate in the process. This process benefits us all and it is important that we do our part to be counted.
One aspect of the Census process that is of critical importance to the enumerators is the fact that they had to take an Oath of Confidentiality. Mrs. Mills-Diamond said that after going through the questionnaire she understood the importance of secrecy, adding that the general public will require the assurance that the information they give will not be disclosed.