Without More Census Funding, Disadvantaged Communities Risk Being Overlooked Most

Governing: Several events in recent months have hinted that the 2020 Census could be in serious trouble.

The latest funding proposals fall far short of what many contend is needed to prepare for the decennial count. In February, the Government Accountability Office added the program to its “high risk” list. And just last week, Director John Thompson surprised Census observers when he announced that he would resign at the end of next month.

Former agency officials and Census advocates are worried that inadequate preparation could potentially spell significant problems for the accuracy of the count. Given that congressional redistricting and funding for hundreds of federal programs all rely on the decennial Census, the reliability of the numbers carry far-reaching consequences.

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