Groups Encourage Census Participation to Prevent Missouri From Losing Representation
Missouri could keep all of its current congressional seats and secure additional federal funding if more residents fill out next year’s census. Officials say if 60,000 extra people fill out the form next year, Missouri may not lose a U.S. House seat and the state could receive a larger share of health care and education funding based on census data. From KOMU Missouri:
JEFFERSON CITY – The Complete Count Committee, a 26 member organization of state community leaders, met Monday to discuss how to prevent Missouri from loosing federal benefits due to the 2010 census.
Analysts predict Missouri will lose one of its nine representatives and federal funding for things like Head Start programs, emergency food and shelter, and public transportation because of population loss.
Changes, including a shorter 10-question census and hand-held computers with Global Positioning System, will make canvassing by census employees smoother.
The CCC says its main goal is to get people whose addresses they don’t have to still respond to the census. They can’t contact these people through the mail, and so those residents have to go to census collection sites to be counted.
The CCC is gathering support to create divisional CCCs at the state, local, and community levels. These volunteer groups will conduct events and activities to inform people of the importance of the census. In the past census, groups ranging from college sororities to ethnic community groups have taken on the role of a CCC to count hard-to-reach groups.
“With their cooperation, they’re able to assist us at the state, where maybe the state in its totality, doesn’t know those same pockets, can’t get to the same community members, and so they basically become a vital resource,” said Kelvin Simmons of the Office of Administration.