"The Young & The Restless," one of America's leading soap operas, clarified yesterday that its portrayal of a U.S. Census Bureau employee in a current story line was a complete fabrication.
In the episodes, which aired in late January on CBS, a private investigator poses as a US Census 2000 enumerator to obtain birth certificate infomation on one of the daytime drama's teenage characters and then reveals the data to an interested party.
Under federal law, US Census officials are under oath not to divulge individual data obtained in a Census to anyone outside the Census Bureau for any reason, including the IRS, the INS, the F.B. I. Or any law enforcement agency.
"We want to clarify the misconception conveyed in these two episodes. Census 2000 is extremely important to the American people and we realize it is in the best interests of everyone to participate," said Kay Alden, Young & the Restless' head writer.
The Census Bureau began sending out its Census 2000 questionnaires earlier this month and most Americans have been receiving them all week.