Step up; every census counts

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The envelope arrived weeks ago and I placed it on my “temporary” work desk at home.

Out of sight, out of mind.

Until I found it again when I searched through some printed notes to work on a story.

I opened the letter and unfolded the blue sheet of paper inside.

Oh yeah, the census.

I decided to put in my “two cents.” I visited the website, entered the code provided and about 10 minutes later, I was “counted.”

Easy peasy, they say.

Curious me, who had never filled out a census before, decided to do some research — after the fact.

It’s a viable tool that we, as citizens, use to make sure that our every person in communities nationwide is counted every 10 years.

The census provides statistics that are used to allocate federal funds, grants and support to vital programs within states, counties and communities based on breakdowns by sex, age, race and other factors.

These funds can help improve quality of life, consumer advocacy, create jobs, ensure public safety, plan new schools and hospitals and build new homes.

You might think, “no, I don’t want to fill out the census.”

Your census is protected by federal law. Law enforcement agencies, the courts, immigration — anyone for that matter — cannot access your information for a period of 72 years.

According to @NCCensus on Twitter, about 50% of North Carolinians have filled out their census.

It’s not too late.

I encourage you, your family and your friends to be counted while we practice social distancing at home. You can find the census at my2020census.gov or call 844-330-2020.

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