This year’s Census count is important for Jersey City, and it has rolled out an effort to make sure as few people as possible are missed this year. In the last nationwide canvass, the Census missed more than 3 million people, many of them children, minorities and immigrants. That undercounting disproportionately impacts cities, which have higher populations of some of these “at-risk” groups; the Census figures are used to calculate everything from Congressional representation to federal aid.
But the city isn’t the only entity pushing for a more accurate count — the federal government is as well. Today, the 2010 Census Portrait of America Road Tour will swing into Jersey City; one of more than 800 stops it will make nationwide. The tour features Liberty, the designated vehicle for the Census’ efforts in the New York region, which will be equipped with promotional videos and portable exhibits in multiple languages. The vehicle will also have boxes of promotional materials to remind people the census is coming and to fill out and mail back their forms, which are slated to arrive in mailboxes in March.
Today’s Jersey City events include a press conference to kick off the tour at City Hall (noon to 2 pm) and a stop at the Journal Square PATH plaza (4 to 7 pm). At both sites, you can see the 2010 Census interactive questionnaire exhibit, take webcam photos for the Portrait of America project, obtain Census literature and learn about local plans to generate participation.