Census day arrives as the USA keeps fighting COVID-19. It is for reference where a person lives for the once-a-decade count. Census day arrived this Wednesday on 1 April 2020. But with a nation worst hit by the spread of the novel coronavirus, the count is not done. But census officials say the job will be completed by the year-end deadline.
There is an issue of attention. When people are anxious about a public health issue, and their kids are away from school, and they’re being away from work. It is a concern that the census is not on top of people’s minds as you would want it to be.
Why did the Census Bureau fail to keep with Census Day?
The US Census Bureau has suspended field operations for a month. The department is not working from mid-March to April-end. The hiring process will be gearing up for almost 50,000 temp census takers. The bureau is also delaying the start of count for the homeless and people living in group quarters. Because people are living in college dorms and nursing homes. But this has pushed back the deadline for wrapping up the headcount from the end of July to mid-August.
Today is Census Day! Help us spread the word about the importance of the #2020Census. Make this image your profile picture or post it on your timeline and make sure to tell your friends to complete to the census today at https://t.co/nzqhoc1xHM! pic.twitter.com/3zQOxssgFI
— U.S. Census Bureau (@uscensusbureau) April 1, 2020
The Census Bureau will be sending the president the census counts. Which is used to carve up congressional districts? This process is apportionment. It draws state legislative districts by Dec. 31. Some groups are suggesting to push back the deadline, though it’s currently mandated by federal law.
The headcount started in late January in rural, native villages in Alaska, but the rest of the country wasn’t able to start answering the questionnaire until the second week of March when the Census Bureau’s self-response website went live and people received notices in the mail that they could start answering the questions. But that was only a week before many governors and mayors issue stay-at-home orders to slow the virus’s spread. This is greatly hindering meetings, rallies, and door-knocking by activists to raise awareness about the 2020 census.
Experts say connecting with trusted community leaders in person is the best way to reach people in hard-to-count groups that may be wary of the federal government. But there is no way Census count will be over by year-end. Robert Santos, vice president, and chief methodologist at the Urban Institute says, “It’s implausible. It is actually impossible. But, if they are to shift it to next year. The board requires permission from the Congress.
Suryapratim Ray is an engineer, author, robotics hobbyist, and an active Quoran. Being a technical blogger, he covers the good, bad, and ugly of science on a regular basis at Sciencenews18. In addition to his passion for writing, he’s equally keen on learning classical music.