If you’ve traveled a highway, crossed a bridge, applied for FEMA aid or your children get a free or reduced-cost lunch at school, you’ve benefited from the U.S. Census count.
Conducted every 10 years, the census — available online for the first time this year — helps determine funding for constants in everyday life, from libraries, community centers and Pell Grants to Medicaid and hospitals.
It shapes the maps of legislative districts. And helps determine how much money is available to house and provide warm meals to the elderly in your area. That’s just a start.
Given that impact, participation in the 2020 census is critically important. Several groups accross Central Florida are working together to ensure that no person goes uncounted.
It’s an uphill battle — even more so this year with changes to the decennial count, less funding than ever and some (Census officials insist invalid) concerns about security, privacy or how the information will be used.
“Getting a complete count of every person is critical because 2020 Census results will have a huge financial impact on Brevard,” said Rob Rains, United Way of Brevard president.
“The Census is an important part of the democratic process at all levels — local, state and national district boundaries and representation in the U.S. House of Representatives are impacted by the Census. It also affects how FEMA responds to our community after a disaster. It’s funding for resources that benefit the entire community.”