Washington, D.C.—Today marks exactly one year until Census Day, 2020. Hispanics in Philanthropy (HIP) and its partners are demanding a fair and accurate count for all communities. America’s changing demographics necessitates that this census be as accurate as possible to determine fair, proportionate voting representation, and to ensure that $800 billion in federal funding is allocated equitably in the decade to come.
“Since 1790, the mission of the U.S. Census has been to ensure every person is counted to provide fair and equal representation and allocation of resources. The genius of the census is that it allows the U.S. to empower its people to exercise their individual and collective political power,” said Ana Marie Argilagos, HIP president and CEO. “It was never intended to be weaponized, or to instill fear in our country’s residents. The essence of the principle of inclusion — counting everyone — will be put in jeopardy if a citizenship question is added it to the census. This one question will be used to intimidate, creating a culture that demonizes immigrants. And, it will do so at the cost of undermining the needs of all U.S. residents and their respective communities.”
The last census, in 2010, missed more than a million children under five, including a high percentage of Latino children. This undercount of young children resulted in states losing thousands of millions of dollars in federal funding. Today, those children, whose states did not receive adequate funding, are about to start high school. For the past 10 years, their communities haven’t received their fair share of dollars for schools, hospitals, public transit and social support systems — the systems most needed to ensure a safe and healthy childhood.
Communities miss out when everyone is not counted. They miss out on the opportunity to build a healthy, safe, prosperous future for their children, and on their ability to shape their political voice and power. That’s why today, HIP is committed to ensuring that the 2020 Census is fair and accurate.
Sonia Melendez Reyes