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U.S Census looks to reach "Hard To Count" Nebraskans

Posted at 5:37 PM, Dec 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-13 19:40:46-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) --- — The census is months away from showing up at your doorstep.

In March invitations will be sent out to Nebraskans and people can participate by filling out a hard copy questionnaire, going online, or by phone.

At the University of Nebraska-Omaha, the 2020 Census Summit is getting coordinators ready to hire census workers...and learn best practices to get people to fill out the form.

Vicki McIntire, Deputy Regional Director with the U.S. Census Bureau, says they hope about 65% of people will fill it out without anyone having to knock on their door.

“Of course, every community might have their own fears or concerns about responding to the Census and we're really hoping that the people in the room today are the people that those communities trust and will listen to about how that it is safe, and easy, and important for their community," McIntire explained.

An accurate count helps the federal government determine how much money each state or city will get for schools, services, and roads.

Their biggest challenge is reaching hard to count populations such as non-English speakers, low income people, homeless, folks that are highly mobile, and undocumented immigrants.

Title 13 of the U.S. Code says the Census cannot release identifiable information even for non-citizens.

Its estimated that it costs Nebraska $1,342 per person per year for each person that's undercounted in the U.S. Census.