In Texas, a 1 percent undercount could cost our state $300 million annually in federal funding for health care services, quality schools, affordable housing and hunger programs. Businesses rely on Census data for market research, economic development and where to expand locations. In an area of rapid growth, like North Texas, this last item is extremely important. If we don’t have an accurate count of the growth of an area, then a company may not move quickly on expanding into a burgeoning community.
To ensure a complete count we have to work to make sure the hard to count communities are reached. These communities include children under 5, immigrants, people of color, families that move frequently and people who face language barrier. And, with the first ever online Census, that adds another barrier to those without access to the Internet.
There is an incredible effort underway to ensure these communities are counted, but it will take all of us to make it successful. You’ll begin to receive information from the Census this spring, including how to complete the Census online. However, there is much work to be done leading up to it. I encourage you to share the importance of the Census with your family, friends and neighbors. Talk about the importance of a complete count on our communities’ futures. And, do your part to make sure your family is counted.
The Census counts because you count, and because our future counts.