Feds Rolling Out 2020 Census, Including a Summit to Encourage Religious Americans to Participate

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

The U.S. Census Bureau, which keeps track of the nation’s people and the economy, is required by the Constitution to count the population of citizens and non-citizens who live in the United States.

And the federal government is turning to the religious Americans to help it get the most accurate data.

The Bureau announced on Friday that it will be holding an “Interfaith Partner Summit” to instruct religious leaders how to get their congregations to take part in the Census.

The press release announcing the event said:

Leaders of faith are trusted voices within their communities and have been key partners in previous census counts helping to ensure an accurate and complete count of their congregations. This event kicks off an awareness campaign to generate excitement within faith communities about the upcoming Faith Communities Census Weekend of Action, March 27-29, 2020. Building on 2020 Census faith outreach well underway, the weekend will take place at services, houses of worship, or faith community events as a coordinated opportunity for faith leaders to encourage everyone, including hard-to-count individuals and families, to respond to the 2020 Census.

Steven Dillingham, director of the Bureau, will lead a panel discussion on February 18 at the Washington National Cathedral.

The religious leaders invited to participate include the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings, President, House of Deputies of The Episcopal Church; Bishop Reginald Jackson, African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, 6th District of Georgia; the Rev. Gabriel Salguero, National Latino Evangelical Coalition; Hurunnessa Fariad, All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center; Sister Judith Ann Karam, CSA, Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine, Catholic Health Association; Rabbi Menachem Creditor, United Jewish Appeal (UJA)-Federation; and Vikshu Kumar Gurung, Founder of the Buddhist Society of Nebraska.

The Census is not only to count the country’s population, but it also collects much more data about that population, including seeking data on families, education, employment and income, race and gender.

And the data collected for this census will directly impact the people who do or do not take part, according to the website.

“The data collected by the decennial census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and is also used to distribute billions in federal funds to local communities,” the Census Bureau website states.

The 2020 Census will determine how Congress distributes $675 billion across the nation.

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