Sunday, March 21, 2010

Help Charlotte's Population Get Counted

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/21/2010 No comments
"We can't move forward until you mail it back." Just about everyone has heard that slogan recently on TV or radio commercials for the 2010 U.S. Census. But you'd be surprised at the large number of people who don't mail back the census form.

On Thursday evening, I attended a meeting held by the U.S Census and the Urban League of Central Carolinas that asked organizations to "adopt" Charlotte neighborhoods that had a low response rate during the last census. Organizations and volunteers who adopt one of the "hard-to-count" areas will hold an event on national "March to the Mailbox Day," which is April 10, to encourage their neighbors to return their census form if they haven't already done so.

Hard-to-count areas in Charlotte are made up largely of minority and low-income populations and include neighborhoods along Beatties Ford, Sugar Creek, and Billingsley roads. Figures from the 2000 Census show that nationwide 628,000 blacks were not counted and the non-Hispanic white population was double-counted by approximately 2.2 million.

For people who don't understand the importance of this census count, which is only conducted once every ten years, just remember this:
  • Federal and local governments use census information to determine the allocation of billions of dollars of funds to communities for schools, roads, hospitals, senior centers, and other services.
  • Census data is used to determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives and to create voting districts for Congress, state legislatures, school boards, and city councils.
  • And no, the information you supply on the census form is not shared with any other government agency. It's completely confidential and isn't shared with law enforcement, the IRS, FBI, immigration, or anyone else you might be scared of. Plus, this all-important form only takes a few minutes to complete and comes with a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Most people began receiving their form in the mail last week.

If you would like to find out how you can help the population get counted in one of Charlotte's hard-to-count areas, or if you'd like to organize an event in your own neighborhood, contact Lisa Crawford at And for details on all 2010 Census matters, visit You can also follow the Charlotte Regional Census Office on Facebook.


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