The 2020 census count begins in Ohio in April and grassroots organizations are teaming up to ensure this one will be as accurate as possible.
Five Ohio nonprofits - including the Ohio Children’s Defense Fund – will share a $250,000 grant to distribute to organizations promoting census participation.
Ohio Children’s Defense Fund executive director Tracy Nájera says the money will be used to spread census information to hard to reach groups like new parents, immigrants, students, and racial minorities. She says the impact of inaccurate counts is significant.
“If we have an undercount similar to what we had in the last census and what researchers are projecting us to have, Ohio could lose out on upwards of $87 million a year.”
Nájera says the census affects how states receive federal funding and how many congressional districts the state will have.
The grant money comes from the New Venture Fund which supports census work nationwide.
The state of Ohio is not appropriating grants for census outreach, but Nájera says they are still using public service announcements and including information on tax forms to communicate census information to as many people as possible.