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Legislative Democrats Call for 2020 Census Extension

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 17th 2020


PHOENIX– Legislative Caucuses and the Arizona Fair and Accurate Census Tally Coalition released the following statement on the need to return the Census deadline back to its original end date of October 31st.


“It is difficult to overstate the critical importance of the 2020 Census for Arizona. It is a chance to ensure that Arizona gets the resources and funding our state needs to keep it an incredible place to live. The census truly has a direct impact on our daily lives - from the roads we drive on, the schools our children attend, our access to health care, to even our political representation. For decades the Census has been a nonpartisan event that everyone supports. But unfortunately we’ve seen the census has come under partisan political attacks to prevent every American from being rightfully counted. The Census was originally scheduled to end on October 31st, but is currently set to end on September 30th. Ending the Census a month early will only hurt Arizona’s chances of having a complete count. The threats of an undercount are particularly serious in Arizona and our tribal lands. As of today's date, Arizona ranks forty-ninth in total response rates. Only Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi rank lower than Arizona. Without an extension, the U.S. Census Bureau will not have the necessary time to count all Arizonans in what is always a challenging task that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. This is why we're on calling on Governor Doug Ducey to request an extension for the Census so that we can achieve a complete count for Arizona.”


“The importance of an accurate count of all members of the Latino and other underserved communities cannot be overstated. Everything from Head Start to housing, healthcare to CTE (career and technical education), low-income energy assistance to community development utilize federal funds based on accurate data from the Census. Any undercount would prove costly for Arizona, not just in dollars and programs but for individual lives and underserved communities, as well as our state’s collective potential,” said David Adame, President and CEO of Chicanos Por La Causa.

Dr. Lupita Ley Hightower, Superintendent, Tolleson Elementary School District says, “As a school educator, I know the importance of every source of funding in our schools. One of the ways the federal government allocates funding to schools and other important areas in our state is by using Census information. It is imperative to be counted appropriately and accurately in order to receive these critical resources for the next 10 years. Each of us counts, please join me in filling out the census survey.”


The ALMA (Arizona Latin-American Medical Association) Council also added,“The ALMA (Arizona Latin-American Medical Association) Councilurgently requests Governor Ducey take a leadership role making every effort to extend the 2020 US Census count to benefit the health and welfare of all Arizona residents. To remain silent and passive at this critical juncture conveys an indifference to the health and welfare of our Arizona community.”


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