Miami-Dade children’s advocates want you to answer U.S. Census questionnaire

Local activists worry about lack of participation on U.S. Census

MIAMI – The impact of the coronavirus pandemic in South Florida is complicating the U.S. Census Bureau’s once-a-decade mission to collect data through a questionnaire. The data is crucial to the allocation of public funds. This is why Amanda Gorski is concerned.

Gorski said Miami-Dade County could potentially lose much-needed funds if people don’t respond to the questionnaire and the data doesn’t reflect the needs of the community.

“I think people have a lot on their minds,” said Gorski, of The Children’s Trust, which runs several programs for children in need in Miami-Dade.

Gorski, the director of public policy and community engagement, said an undercount puts several programs at risk including Medicaid, Kidcare, Head Start and education programs. The data is also used crucial decisions such as where to build schools.

“It also will impact our representation in Washington,” Gorski said, adding the questionnaire’s 10 questions should not take more than 10 minutes to complete.

The Census Bureau is planning to hire census takers to go door-to-door to find residents who haven’t responded to the questionnaire. The deadline for the 2020 count is in August.

For more information or to respond to the questionnaire, visit the U.S. Census site.

The deadlines

March 12-20: Household will receive official census mail with information on how to respond online, by phone or through the mail.

March 30-April 1: Census will count homeless populations

April 1: Census Day. Census takers will visit college students on campus, senior centers and others who live among large groups during the month of April.

May-July: Census takers will visit homes that haven’t responded.

Dec.: Census Bureau will deliver counts to the president and Congress.

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