Contact: Ernest Cawvey
Phone: (586) 469-6999
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 03, 2020
Macomb County Executive Hackel, Macomb ISD Superintendent DeVault host 2020 Census ‘Be Counted’ Town Hall with Attorney General Nessel, Michigan Census Director Singh
State data shows Macomb County is among top three in Michigan at risk of being undercounted; town hall sought to dispel myths, maximize participation
Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel and Macomb Intermediate School District Superintendent Michael R. DeVault hosted a Michigan 2020 Census “Be Counted” Campaign Town Hall today at the Macomb ISD featuring Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and Michigan 2020 Statewide Census Director Kerry Ebersole Singh.
They were joined by a bipartisan team of Macomb County civic and business leaders – including Chaldean Community Foundation and Chaldean American Chamber of Commerce President Martin Manna and Macomb Community Action Agency Director Ernest Cawvey – who highlighted the importance and convenience of completing the census as well as the benefits it brings to local communities.
“We are pulling out all the stops to make sure Michigan gets an accurate count on the 2020 census,” Nessel said during the event at Macomb Intermediate School District. “We are hosting these town halls across the state to get out the word that it’s critical for everyone in Michigan to be counted.”
The top three counties most at risk of being underrepresented in Michigan by people not completing the census are Wayne (384,357), Oakland (211,507) and Macomb (145,808).
Researchers estimate that for every person not counted, communities lose approximately $3,000 per person in federal funding each year for the next 10 years. Statewide, more than 1.8 million residents are estimated to be hard to count in 2020, as measured by census tracts with high poverty, low access to the internet or other challenges that depress participation in the decennial count.
“This is an all-hands-on deck moment,” Hackel said. “I consider completing the census a thing of great pride. We all take pride in being Michiganders, so we must all do our part to ensure Michigan has an accurate count on the 2020 Census.”
A complete census count is critical because it determines how much funding Michigan communities receive for essential services such as public safety, including police and fire, health care, education,roads and other infrastructure through 2030. In 2016, Michigan received nearly $30 billion in federal funding, including $1.1 billion for highway planning and construction, $16 billion for health programs, $5 billion for education, $2.3 billion for food assistance programs and $1.5 billion for housing assistance.
“Too often we think about the census in negative terms – about what will be lost if we don’t complete the census,” Hackel added. “I think we need to have a more positive outlook on this opportunity on what benefits the census provides to Macomb County.”
The Macomb event is among a statewide series of town halls featuring Michigan’s top state and local leaders who are helping promote awareness of the 2020 Census, Singh said.
“The goal of the Michigan 2020 Census ‘Be Counted’ town hall tour is to communicate the importance of completing the census, dispel myths and explain how filling out the census is more convenient than ever,” Singh said. “The 2020 census can be completed in person, by mail and – for the first time ever – by phone and online.”
The Michigan Legislature in an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote has allocated an unprecedented $16 million to help with outreach and preparation for Michigan residents’ participation in the 2020 census. The campaign is a collaboration between the State of Michigan, U.S. Census Bureau and the Michigan Nonprofit Association. With the support of the Council of Michigan Foundations, additional funding for the MNA effort comes from more than 40 foundations throughout Michigan.
“We must pull out all the stops to ensure the 2020 Census is a success for Macomb County and our entire state,” DeVault said. “I am proud to say I’m going to “Be Counted” on this important effort that directly impacts funding for our schools and so many other critical services and programs that benefit Macomb County and beyond.”
The 2020 census form includes nine questions and takes less than 10 minutes to complete – but those 10 minutes can benefit Michigan for the next 10 years.
The only questions that are asked:
- Number of people in the household
- Anyone else staying in the house on April 1, 2020
- If you own or rent your home
- Phone number
Michigan’s education push will use traditional and ethnic/minority-owned media such as radio, TV and newspaper ads, direct mail and outdoor billboards, town halls and public forums, in addition to digital channels such as email, mobile and social media.
As part of today’s town hall, U.S. Census Bureau staff promoted awareness they are looking to recruit thousands of temporary workers to fill 2020 census jobs in Macomb County and elsewhere around the country. The jobs are mainly for clerical and census taker positions, but also include a few supervisory and recruitment outreach positions.
In Macomb County, 2020 census jobs pay between $20 and 24.50 an hour, according to an interactive map from the Census Bureau. Census takers are eligible for reimbursement for work-related mileage and other expenses.
Preference for the temporary Census Bureau jobs is given to U.S. armed services veterans who were honorably discharged. But jobs are open to U.S. citizens 18 and older with proof of a valid Social Security number and registration with the U.S. Selective Service System. Among other conditions of employment, applicants must pass a census-performed criminal background check.
Most jobs require the applicant to have a valid driver’s license, unless public transportation is available. All applicants must have an email account and access to a computer and the internet.
Most jobs will last several weeks, though it depends on the amount of available work. Hours are flexible, though some require daytime work so addresses on buildings are clearly visible. Census takers doing personal interviews must be available to work evenings and weekends, when people are usually at home. Those in supervisory positions must be available for certain day, evening and weekend shifts.
It takes about 30 minutes to apply online for census jobs. Learn more about the 2020 census at macombgov.org/census2020, michigan.gov/census2020/ and census.gov. You can also visit Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
21885 Dunham Road, Suite 10, Clinton Township, MI 48036
General Media Inquires - please contact John Cwikla at 586-463-3523