Resolutions promote awareness and involvement in the 2020 Census

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Census worker (2010) (US Census Bureau/Flickr)
Urban News Staff Reports

In an effort to raise awareness about the 2020 Census, two resolutions are being put forth that would encourage increased participation throughout the state. The resolution is sponsored by  Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera.

The Assembly Women and Children Committee – which Mosquera chairs – recently received testimony from various experts regarding how the Census will impact New Jersey residents. Advocates for Children of New Jersey, the regional director of the Census Bureau and the New Jersey Secretary of State were among the guests who spoke.

The committee also advanced a resolution (AR-79) to designate March 12th – 22nd as “Get out the Count Week” and another resolution (AR-78) to urge counties and municipalities to form Complete Count Committees. These committees would be comprised of government and community leaders who would create an awareness campaign encouraging participation in the Census, based on their understanding of the community.

“Many people don’t realize just how important the Census is to their community and how it will impact various aspects of their lives," Mosquera said. "We need to make our residents more aware of how the data gathered during the Census will affect their friends and family.

According to the 2010 Census, return rates for New Jersey’s cities were low with only 55% in Newark and 50% in Irvington, for example. Census data determines how $17.56 billion is distributed throughout the Garden State. 

The 2020 Census can be filled out by mail, phone or online. The U.S. Census Bureau will begin sending mailings about the count in March.   

“The number of people recorded within a region influences federal allocation of funding for various social programs, including Medicare and SNAP," Mosquera added. "It also affects funding for school programs and infrastructure improvements, while determining the amount of Congressional delegates that will represent New Jersey.

The resolutions will now go to the Assembly Speaker for further consideration. 

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