#knowyourfacts: US census

WHAT IS THE US CENSUS & WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?

The US Census is one of the most impressive attempts any country makes to count its own people, a crucial building block for the world’s largest democracy. Participating in the census is in everyone's best interest, because the information on the forms is used by decision-makers to determine :

  • The federal government uses census numbers to allocate more than $400 billion in federal funds annually for community programs and services, such as education programs, housing and community development, health care services for the elderly and job training.
  • The U.S. Congress uses the census totals to determine how many seats a state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives

 

[Some] things in danger due to budget cuts & shitty things about what's not counted:

  • "The decennial census is by far the most important and critical tool in our country to ensure that diverse communities are equitably served with government resources and that the American people are adequately represented at all levels of government." -- Wade Henderson, president and CEO of Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.
  • Advocates say current funding shortfalls will result in many people – particularly black, Latino, LGBTQQIA (who remain unenumerated) and rural households, and families with young children – being missed by the count.
  • An undercount can also trigger changes in political representation – from redrawn district lines, to fewer seats in local, state and federal offices, often diminishing the power of communities of color. 
  • The decennial census doesn’t traditionally ask about immigration status, & due to Trump's administration’s executive orders cracking down on undocumented immigrants raises questions about whether the White House intends to use the information collected on both the ACS and census to track down and deport undocumented immigrants.

 

resources, because fuck fake news: