With a little over six months until the 2010 Census, outreach has already begun to ensure as complete a count as possible. A lot’s at stake.
Every ten years, the Census Bureau has the daunting task of counting everyone--no matter their legal status--living in the United States and its territories, as mandated by the Constitution. 2010 is one of those years.
Although the Census Bureau protects respondents’ privacy and does not inquire about residency status, many unauthorized immigrants are fearful that information they provide may be used by law enforcement or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) against them. It’s well known that the census undercounts minorities and low-income people disproportionately, and great pains are taken to reach out to these communities to gain trust and minimize the undercount. Nevertheless, immigrants with legal status are more likely to fill out Census questionnaires than those who are living here illegally and fear of government recriminations.
Read more: The New Republic