Don’t forget to respond to the Census

Every decade, the federal government conducts a census of the entire population, noting the name, age, gender, race and ethnicity of every person in the United States. This information shapes federal funding for states, counties and communities.

The U.S. Census Bureau had originally extended the collection deadline through October, but a recent announcement set a final deadline of Sept. 30, a month earlier than expected. The early deadline has renewed concerns that Illinois communities will be under-represented and lose important federal support, noted Susan Odum, University of Illinois Extension community and economic development specialist.

“If all Illinoisans are not counted during the 2020 Census, fewer federal resources will come back to our state,” Odum said. “These resources affect your community, your county and your state in so many ways.”

For more on the Census, please see this week’s print edition.