In its March 22 editorial “During coronavirus crisis, US should delay census deadlines,” the Globe got it right.
More than $16 billion in federal funds is at stake — funds that go to key sectors across the state, including our health care system, which is currently undergoing its greatest test yet. These funds go to specific programs that aid our most vulnerable residents, such as the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), as well to underserved health centers.
Yet if we are not careful, we may repeat past mistakes and face long-term repercussions. In 2010, Massachusetts was severely undercounted, leading not only to the loss of substantial funding but a seat in Congress. Cities such as Boston, Lawrence, and Lowell proved immensely difficult to count in 2010, and the same will be true this year.
Over the past few years, MassVOTE has worked tirelessly to ensure that the 2020 Census count is as accurate and inclusive as possible. We have collaborated with legislators, deliberated with community leaders, and organized alongside fellow advocates. Using these strategies, we have fought to overcome past challenges, and will overcome new ones.
Together we can and must get the 2020 Census count right.
Cheryl Clyburn Crawford