Mayor Eric Garcetti joined San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo Wednesday to urge all cities to act immediately to increase participation in the 2020 U.S. Census ahead of the Sept. 30 deadline — as only 56.5% of Angelenos have responded thus far.
“Everybody counts, and we have just three weeks to complete a full and accurate tally of every person in our cities and nation,” Garcetti said. “What’s at stake is nothing less than fair representation in Washington, D.C. and billions of dollars of investments in the health, welfare and safety of our communities.”
According to Garcetti’s office, many large cities currently have response rates under 60%, well below the 66.5% national response rate achieved in the 2010 Census.
The mayors were joined by actor and activist Jaime Camil, executive director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights Los Angeles Angelica Salas, and executive director for the Central City Neighborhood Partners Margarita Gomez.
The U.S. Conference of Mayors said it will work with cities to amplify the need for an accurate count.
“The U.S. Conference of Mayors is committed to making sure that there is a full, fair and accurate count for the 2020 Census as billions in federal funds for cities are dependent on it,” said Tom Cochran, CEO and executive director of the mayors’ group. “Now, more than ever, as cities are shouldering the devastating impact of COVID-19 and the economic recession left in its wake, these funds will play an even greater role in helping mayors provide essential services to their communities.”
The Census is mandated by the U.S. Constitution to take place every 10 years. Census data is used to help determine how many representatives are sent to Congress from each state over the next decade and how much federal funding will return to local governments.
As the largest city in the hardest-to-count county in the nation, there are billions of dollars on the line with the Los Angeles Census response, Garcetti said.
That funding supports programs in education, health care, transportation, infrastructure and more, he said.
To respond to the 2020 Census, visit my2020census.gov.
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