The national census is underway as it has been every decade since 1790. The Census Bureau has shortened the collection period by one month and a coalition of states are pushing back, asking for the October 31st deadline to be restored.
Michigan and seven other states have sent a letter to the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Commerce expressing their displeasure with the moved-up date to end the data collection period.
In a press release, Governor Gretchen Whitmer said, “It is more important than ever that we be able to reach and account for every Michigander to ensure we receive funding for essential programs to help Michiganders recover from the COVID-19 crisis and be successful over the next decade – services like child care, education, foster care, and special education.” She went on to urge residents to complete the census immediately.
The deadline was actually extended by Congress in April as the COVID-19 crisis was just getting started. The fear is that populations that are harder to count will be passed over and the funding that is tied to population counts will not be available to states. It is estimated that Michigan has 3.3 million residents who are considered “hard to count”.
Reporting for WGRT – Jennie McClelland