NALEO Educational Fund Testifies On Census Operations

Apr 06, 2011, 13:48 ET from NALEO Educational Fund

WASHINGTON, April 6, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NALEO Educational Fund Executive Director Arturo Vargas, a noted expert on Census issues, spoke today before the Senate Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management, Government Information, Federal Services and International Security, offering an overview of the 2010 Census that included a look at the efficacy of outreach efforts and practices.

"The results of data from polling within the Latino community suggest unprecedented Latino participation in the 2010 Census," said Vargas. "(But) we believe that our nation did not achieve a full count of the Latino population," adding that some in the community "encountered significant barriers," which included "fear and distrust of government."

In addition, Vargas testified that "a hostile environment toward Latinos and immigrants" in several parts of the country may have contributed to an undercount in those areas. Vargas also cited examples of operational challenges by the Census Bureau, including miscommunication between Bureau personnel and the community in South Texas.

Mr. Vargas presented concrete recommendations in planning for the next decennial count in 2020, including ensuring that the Census Director be appointed for fixed five-year terms well in advance of enumeration efforts.

Other recommendations include a greater focus on English-language outreach in the Latino community and the creation of an interagency taskforce to promote the 2020 Census within all federal agencies.

(Click here to view a copy of his full testimony)

About NALEO Educational Fund

The NALEO Educational Fund is the nation's leading non-partisan, non-profit organization that facilitates the full participation of Latinos in the American political process, from citizenship to public service.

Contact: Patricia Guadalupe, (202) 546-2536

SOURCE NALEO Educational Fund