Monday, December 29, 2008

2010 Census

GOOD MORNING FLINT ! 12/29/08 By Terry Bankert Did you know that the Federal Funding that comes into Flint is based on our census count? Did you know that the City Of Flint gets at least $1,500 in Federal dollars returned to Flint based upon our census count? Did you know that the city of Flint only counted 61% of its population in the year 2000? Millions of dollars are at stake. See Information on census jobs. Language barriers. Cultural diversity. Suspicion about the government. They're all part of the daunting challenge the Census Bureau faces in just 18 months to accurately tally the number of Americans. Counting each person in the USA every 10 years hasn't been easy since the first Census in 1790, when counters went door to door on horseback. But 220 years later, the hurdles could be unprecedented. The nation now has more than 300 million people. It's more diverse than ever. Natural disasters such as hurricanes Katrina and Ike have displaced tens of thousands. Home foreclosures have put countless families into temporary living arrangements. To count them, the Census Bureau first has to find them. Complicating the task is a widespread climate of suspicion about personal data landing in the wrong hands and government's increased surveillance power. Much of the unease is engendered by the growing problem of identity theft and the 9/11 terrorist attacks. New anti-terrorism measures such as the Patriot Act expanded the authority of law enforcement agencies here and abroad. The Census vows confidentiality, but new state and local laws that aim to crack down on undocumented immigrants are making even some legal immigrants nervous. "It's the first post-9/11 Census," says Terri Ann Lowenthal, a legislative consultant for The Census Project, a coalition of groups eager for an accurate Census. "There's a double issue: concern about immigrants and concern about privacy of data." The Census Bureau has to get past the distrust and break through a vast number of languages and cultures. At the same time, the agency is scrambling to satisfy congressional overseers upset over mounting costs of the 2010 Census — now estimated at $14 billion — and its failure to use more technology such as online filing and handheld computers to help gather data. WHAT CAN WE AS A COMMUNITY DO TO GET AS MANY FLINT PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE COUNTED? Posted Here By Terry Bankert 110801

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