The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted and delayed the counting of every person in the country for the 2020 census.
Now, the Trump administration is forcing the U.S. Census Bureau to cut the census short by one month. A rushed census guarantees the U.S. Census Bureau won’t be able to count millions of people living in rural and tribal communities, people of color, people with disabilities, and people with low incomes or experiencing homelessness.
Erasing these communities would skew congressional representation, redistricting and critical community funding for every state in the country for the next 10 years. An undercount would threaten funding for Medicaid and hospitals, unemployment insurance, and affordable housing—all programs communities rely on to survive.
In the middle of a pandemic and a recession, the U.S. needs a good census more than ever. Yet without quick congressional action, the Census Bureau faces an impossible deadline of December 31, 2020, to count, review, process, tabulate and report 2020 census apportionment and redistricting data.
“It’s going to be impossible to complete the count in time,” said an area manager who oversees local census offices. “I’m very fearful we’re going to have a massive undercount.”
There is now a window to push House and Senate leadership to prioritize including an extension of the data reporting deadlines in upcoming legislation and to encourage senators to support that effort. If Congress gives the Census Bureau more time to report census data, then it can take the time it needs to finish the census.
It’s time to make some noise and tell Congress to save the census and make sure millions of people in this country aren’t erased.
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Here’s how to take action:
Send a press release or pitch an oped calling on Congress to act.
Post on social media using the hashtag #SavetheCensus.
Share and sign petitions…
- In English: Tell Congress: Extend the Census Reporting Deadline petition
- In Spanish: Dígale al Congreso:No al recorte del Censo este 2020, Extienda el Plazo de Reporte del Censo
… or create your own, using this sample script.
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