A panel Gov. Tony Evers has created via executive order is charged with encouraging participation in the 2020 Census.
Speaking at a news conference in Milwaukee Monday, Evers noted that Wisconsin was among the national leaders in census participation rates in 2010. But the guv added the newly formed Complete Count Committee would be necessary to reach out to the estimated 600,000 Wisconsinites the U.S. Census Bureau considers hard to count.
The Census Bureau defines hard-to-count populations as those that are difficult to locate, contact, persuade or interview. Those falling under that definition span the spectrum of social and economic status, from those who live in gated communities to the homeless to the disabled or those who lack a shared language with the census interviewer.
The guv’s office also identified “children, immigrant and refugee communities, low-income families, renters and those who do not live in traditional housing, people of color, individuals with disabilities, and rural communities” as part of the hard-to-count population.
Evers said the panel would be tasked with developing strategies to reach these communities and reduce obstacles that prevent them from participating in the decennial count.
“Our Wisconsin Complete Count Committee is going to work to educate Wisconsinites on the importance of the census and will help reach those hard to count communities to make sure that they’re counted and their voices and their votes are heard,” he said.
Evers said the committee will coordinate specific roles for state agencies, the Census Bureau, local complete count committees and nonprofits to “facilitate and accurate and complete count.”