LOS ANGELES (CNS) — Elected and appointed government officials are touting the formation of an outreach network aimed at raising public awareness about the upcoming 2020 US Census, its local economic effects and the need for a complete count.
Census Champions is a network of hundreds of state, local and tribal elected and appointed officials committed to a fair and accurate count, including enumeration of communities considered to be “hard to count,” officials said.
“Los Angeles is a city of belonging, where everyone’s voice matters and everybody counts,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “When all Angelenos participate in the 2020 Census, we can get the representation we deserve in Washington and the resources we need in Los Angeles to support our families’ health, our students’ education and our residents’ future.”
Census Champions is being led by The Leadership Conference Education Fund’s Census Counts Campaign and the NALEO Educational Fund.
“State and local elected officials have a critical role to play in getting out the count in their communities,” said Jheanelle Wilkins, the director of state and local government affairs for the LCEF.
“We launched Census Champions to provide resources, information and materials for use by state and local elected officials as they lead and support census efforts in the communities they represent.”
Lizette Escobedo, director of the National Census Program, said the program’s Hagase Contar! campaign is trying to make sure Latino residents are counted.
With $3.9 million in its pocket to ensure as many residents as possible are counted in the 2020 census, the Los Angeles City Council in July called on the mayor’s census office to outline plans for door-to-door outreach and education efforts in traditionally undercounted areas.
City officials said earlier this year they were concerned that federal immigration policies that might deter undocumented residents from responding out of fear of deportation.
Plans to add a much-debated question to the census about citizenship status was blocked by the US Supreme Court this summer.
Census data is used as a major factor in cities’ and states’ abilities to obtain federal funding.
More information about Census Counts Campaign is available at www.censuscounts.org.