Clinton Twp., MI - Macomb County Executive Mark A. Hackel and Macomb Intermediate School District Superintendent Michael DeVault will host a Michigan 2020 Census “Be Counted” Campaign Town Hall on Tuesday, March 3 at the MISD featuring Michigan Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel.
They will be joined by Michigan 2020 Statewide Census Director Kerry Ebersole Singh and supported by a bipartisan team of Macomb County civic and business leaders who will highlight the importance and convenience of completing the census as well as the benefits it brings to local communities.
“The census matters because it’s an opportunity for our state to show our strength in numbers,” Gilchrist said. “Each neighborhood and city is built upon the strong foundation of the people who live there. That’s why we are visiting communities around the state to remind everyone to ‘Be Counted.’”
The Macomb County 2020 Census “Be Counted” town hall is 4 p.m. Tuesday at the MISD (44001 Garfield Road, Clinton Township). The event is free and open to the public.
“We are pulling out all the stops to make sure Michigan gets an accurate count on the 2020 census,” said Nessel. “We are hosting these town halls across the state to get out the word that it’s critical for everyone in Michigan to be counted.”
As part of the town hall, the U.S. Census Bureau will staff an information desk to promote awareness and the need for thousands of temporary workers to fill 2020 Census jobs in Macomb County and elsewhere around the country. The jobs are mainly for clerical and census-taker positions, but also include a few supervisory and recruitment outreach positions.
In Macomb County, 2020 Census jobs pay between $20-24.50 an hour, according to an interactive map from the Census Bureau. Census-takers are eligible for reimbursement for work-related mileage and other expenses.
Preference for the temporary Census Bureau jobs is given to U.S. armed services veterans who were honorably discharged. But jobs are open to U.S. citizens 18 and older with proof of a valid Social Security number and registration with the U.S. Selective Service System. Among other conditions of employment, applicants must pass a Census-performed criminal background check. Most jobs require the applicant to have a valid driver's license, unless public transportation is available. All applicants must have an email account and access to a computer and internet. Most jobs will last several weeks, though it depends on the amount of available work. Hours are flexible, though some require daytime work so addresses on buildings are clearly visible. Census-takers doing personal interviews must be available to work evenings and weekends, when people are usually at home. Those in supervisory positions must be available for certain day, evening and weekend shifts.
Applicants must provide their Social Security number, home address, email address, phone number and date and place of birth. Veterans who are claiming preference will have to submit documentation for eligibility.
It'll take about 30 minutes to apply online for Census jobs.
A complete census count is critical because it determines how much funding Michigan communities receive for essential services such as public safety, including police and fire, health care, education, roads and other infrastructure through 2030. In 2016, Michigan received nearly $30 billion in federal funding, including $1.1 billion for highway planning and construction, $16 billion for health programs, $5 billion for education, $2.3 billion for food assistance programs and $1.5 billion for housing assistance.
“The goal of the Michigan 2020 Census ‘Be Counted’ town hall tour is to communicate the importance of completing the census, dispel myths and explain how filling out the census is more convenient than ever,” Ebersole Singh said. “The 2020 census can be completed in person, by mail and – for the first time ever – by phone and online.”
Statewide, more than 1.8 million residents are estimated to be hard to count in 2020, as measured by census tracts with high poverty, low access to the internet or other challenges that depress participation in the decennial count.
The top three counties most at risk of being underrepresented in Michigan by people not completing the census are: Wayne (384,357), Oakland (211,507) and Macomb (145,808). Researchers estimate that for every person not counted, communities lose approximately $3,000 per person in federal funding each year for the next 10 years.
The Michigan Legislature, in an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote, allocated an unprecedented $16 million to help with outreach and preparation for Michigan residents’ participation in the 2020 census. The campaign is a collaboration between the State of Michigan, U.S. Census Bureau and the Michigan Nonprofit Association. With the support of the Council of Michigan Foundations, additional funding for the MNA effort comes from more than 40 foundations throughout Michigan.
The 2020 census form includes nine questions and takes less than 10 minutes to complete – but those 10 minutes can benefit Michigan for the next 10 years.
The only questions that are asked include:
- Number of people in the household
- Anyone else staying in the house on April 1, 2020
- If you own or rent your home
- Phone number
Michigan’s education push will use traditional and ethnic/minority-owned media such as radio, TV and newspaper ads, direct mail and outdoor billboards, town halls and public forums, in addition to digital channels such as email, mobile and social media.