As of Sept. 4, only 54.2 percent of the city’s 53,000 residents had responded to the census, the mandated count of all residents in the United Stated and we’re running out of time.
Bureau officials have now moved up the deadline for completing the census count from Oct. 31 to Sept. 30.
With the deadline looming, the city and DeKalb County have a lot at stake: Each person counted represents an estimated $2,400worth of federally-funded services per year. That equates to $24,000per person for the 10-year census cycle, which can be used for local schools, parks, roads, hospitals, senior services and so much more. The head count also could mean an increase in the number of legislative seats locally.
Census officials initially pushed a self-counting process, urging every household to respond to the census by mail, online or by phone. The second phase of the head count was through the use of enumerators—paid census workers going door-to-door to count everyone in each household. Enumerators were supposed to make two attempts to reach non-respondents for the 2020 census compared to 8 attempts that enumerators were given during the 2010 census.
Due to Covid-19, and other policy decisions, there has been a great shortfall in the number of enumerators for the 2020 census. As a result, there arenumerous households that still have not been counted.
South DeKalb, in particular, has fallen behind Central and North DeKalb areas, in terms of responding. Following are some examples as of Sept. 4:
Avondale 73.8 %
DeKalb County overall average is 63%
At this point, the only way we can come close to meeting the 2010 census numbers is to accelerate the self-counting.
If you are not counted, you will be regarded as a ZERO PERSONfor the next 10 years. Without your knowing it, there could be those amongst us who are working to assure that we are undercounted. For every shortfall that impacts you, gives someone else leverage over your life. We all should feel obligated to bring everyone we know into compliance with the census count or we are equally responsible for leaving $24,000 of our own funds on the table. This applies to every person not included in the census count for the next ten years. We cannot affordto wait.
The number to call now is: 844.330.2020 or visit my2020census.gov. PASS IT ON!
Councilman George Turner, District 4
Chair, Stonecrest 2020 Census Complete Count Committee