My Two Census

Formerly the non-partisan watchdog of the 2010 US Census, and currently an opinion blog that covers all things political, media, foreign policy, globalization, and culture…but sometimes returning to its census/demographics roots.

Posts Tagged ‘Latino Census Network’

On the Closing of the Be Counted and Questionnaire Assistance Centers . . . and Beyond

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

The following press release represents the opinions of the Latino Census Network, not
by the Latino Census Network (April 21, 2010)

The Latino Census Network has received a number of inquiries about the closing of the Census Bureau’s Be Counted and Questionnaire Assistance Centers. Members of the New York City Council have written to the Census Directors asking that these centers be kept open for an additional 30 days. Other have expressed surprise that these centers have closed.

The Census Bureau informs us that these centers had been scheduled to close on April 19th from the start. Because these were established through contracts with community-based organizations and other institutions through contracts, it would be difficult to extend these agreements at this point.

The Census Bureau’s focus now is on their Non-Response Follow-up (NRFU). Door-to-door census taking occurs starting May 1nd through June and early July 2010. Local census takers will visit households that did not mail back a census form. All census takers carry an official badge and a shoulder bag – both with the Department of Commerce seal – and a binder. During a visit, census takers will show ID and hand respondents an information sheet explaining that their answers are confidential. The census taker will complete the questionnaire, which should take about 10 minutes. If no one is home, a “notice of visit” will be left at the door inviting the resident to call the census taker to complete the form over the phone.

With the mail-in participation so close now to the 2000 Census rates at the national level, the Census Bureau no doubt sees this mail-in part of the process a success. It is expected that in the next week or so, additional Census forms will come in, making it possible that the 2000 participation rate will be matched. Given all of the factors that make this 2010 Census more challenging than the last (9/11, greater anti-immigrant sentiment, etc.), this level of mail-in participation is considered a success, at least at the national level.

Title 13, U.S. Code, requires that the apportionment population counts for each state be delivered to the President within nine months of the census date, by December 31. 2010. According to Title 2, U.S. Code, within one week of the opening of the next session of the Congress, the President must report to the Clerk of the House of Representatives the apportionment population counts for each state and the number of Representatives to which each state is entitled. Also according to Title 2, U.S. Code, within 15 days, the Clerk of the House must inform each state governor of the number of representatives to which each state is entitled.

The legislatures in each state are responsible for geographically defining the boundaries of their congressional and other election districts–a process known as redistricting–and more detailed census results are used for these purposes. Public Law 94-171, enacted by Congress in December 1975, requires the Census Bureau to provide state legislatures with the small area census population tabulations necessary for legislative redistricting. The Census Bureau must transmit the total population tabulations to the states by April 1, 2011.

Latino Group Gives Kudos To Steve Jost and Robert M. Groves

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

The following comes to us from the National Institute for Latino Policy’s Latino Census eNewsletter. After some major communications debacles, the new leadership of the Census Bureau appears to be doing a better job at reaching out to minorities:

Note: In the May issue of the Latino Census eNewsletter we reported that the Census Bureau’s advisory body, the Joint Advertising Advisory Review Panel (JAARP), had given the main contractor on the Bureau’s $200 million media program, DraftFCB, a “vote of no confidence” in their handling of this important contract.

Earlier this week, the Census Bureau convened meetings of two of its major advisory committees, the 2010 Census Advisory Committee and the Race and Ethnic Advisory Committee (REAC) to review this communications plan and other preparations for the 2010 Census. As a member of the Census Advisory Committee on the Hispanic Population, I attended Monday’s REAC meeting.

The presentations by the new Census Director, Robert Groves, and the relatively new Director of Communications, Steven Jost, at this meeting effectively restored confidence in the direction of the planning of the media strategy and overall in the new team that was at place now at the Census Bureau. At yesterday’s meeting of the 2010 Census Advisory Committee, Dr. Bernie Millier, Chair of the African-American Committee, read the following statement on behalf of the JAARP in which he states that, “. . . the majority of the REAC chairs and JAARP, no longer have a vote of no confidence in DraftFcb, C2PO and Census.”

The advisory committees and other stakeholders feel that the Census Bureau has heeded their advice and refocused their efforts in more effective ways. Much still needs to be done and tweaked, but there is a general feeling that we are all on the right track.

Angelo Falcón
Chair, Latino Census Network

(Read into the record at the July 21 CAC meeting by Dr. Bernie Miller)
Composed by JAARP members Terri Ao and Dr. Bernie Miller

In April this year, the JAARP members recommended a vote of no confidence in DraftFcb’s ad campaign. In our June meeting, however, we saw significant improvements. The subcontractors and C2PO should be commended for their efforts to reconcile our differences and address our concerns.

The majority of the JAARP and REAC chairs would like to state that we are pleased with the efforts to address our concerns and believe the subcontractors and the bureau are moving in the right direction.

We look forward to continuing to work together to achieve a satisfactory end product. To that end, we, the majority of the REAC chairs and JAARP, no longer have a vote of no confidence in DraftFcb, C2PO and Census.

We realize that our roles are that of advisors. Advisors by definition, give advice, caution, warn, recommend and give information. Judging from the comments made by Dr. Groves at our July 20, REAC meeting, we feel that our advice will receive a higher lever of consideration.

Therefore, we look forward with eager anticipatory expectation, in seeing how the new director, Robert Groves, C2PO, DraftFcb and their subcontractors will address our lingering concerns. Two of them being; 1) will there be adequate funding for all hard to count ethnic groups; And 2) will the ads properly address the fears of all  groups, which is the issue of the privacy and confidentiality?

In closing, it is clear we all want the same outcome, and that is, the most accurate count possible. So, “It’s in your hands!”