Historically, many African Americans were not only skeptical of the accuracy of the census, but downright mistrustful of the government due to historical wrongdoings. This fear and mistrust has lead far too many African Americans refusing to provide the Census Bureau information about themselves or their family. Presumably, blacks fear that the information would be misused, held against them, or personally invade their space.
Here’s the real deal: African Americans desperately need to be counted in the US Census Bureau. The statistics that are published about black men every day are dismal (drop out rates, incarceration, homicide, disease), and some of us fear that these statistics are not entirely accurate because a significant section of upstanding black male citizens still are “invisible”. Our communities need resources, our children deserve better. The country needs to know we are here.
The 10-question census, conducted every 10 years, helps determine the apportionment of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and the annual distribution of more than $400 billion in federal funds. Census information affects the appropriation of funds for education, hospitals, emergency services, job training, infrastructure, federal programs and more. Many professional organizations use census data to advocate for causes, rescue disaster victims, prevent diseases, research markets, locate pools of skilled workers and more.
When you do the math, it’s easy to see what an accurate count of residents can do for your community; better infrastructure, more services and a brighter tomorrow for everyone.
Guess what, it’s just 10 questions. There is no long form this time.When the Census 2010 arrives in your home, take the 10 minutes to complete it. It’s time to be seen, heard and counted in the African American community.
Strength in numbers, my friends. Strength in numbers.