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Census Coalition Wants All Residents In San Diego, Imperial Counties To Be Tallied

Volunteers from NALEO Educational fund, the Barrio Logan College Institute, L...

Photo by Count Me 2020

Above: Volunteers from NALEO Educational fund, the Barrio Logan College Institute, Lambda Theta Phi Fraternity, at the San Diego Latino Film Festival on March 15, 2019.

The next census is fast-approaching and set to begin in April next year. That's when the U.S. Census Bureau will attempt to collect an accurate count of people in the estimated 140 million households across the country. The census is mandated by the U.S. Constitution and is conducted every 10 years.

Census data is used by government entities for redistricting, determining the number of congressional seats and more.

Local organizations brought together by United Way of San Diego County are working to improve participation in hard-to-count communities. Count Me 2020 is a coalition of more than 100 organizations and civic groups that are working to ensure an accurate census tally in San Diego and Imperial counties.

There are some concerns a new question this upcoming year could harm participation. The Census Bureau plans on asking whether respondents are U.S. citizens.

State politicians are demanding the question be eliminated. Some are worried it will cause immigrant communities to opt out due to fear the information will be shared with agencies that may want to deport them.

If they decide not to take part, California could lose hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding annually.

Reported by Anica Colbert

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