Census participation crucial to disbursement of transportation, health funding

As North Texans remain mostly at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, they have an opportunity to help ensure data used for the next 10 years is accurate. The U.S. Census Bureau continues its once-a-decade count, and this year the questionnaire can be completed online.

While the pandemic has forced many changes, technology has helped people remain connected to friends, family and work colleagues. In the same way, it is more convenient than ever to respond to the census. North Texans are encouraged to complete the census online. Information can also be submitted by mail or over the phone.

The questions can be answered in about 10 minutes, and the process is safe and secure. Answers are important because they help determine how much federal funding Dallas-Fort Worth and other regions across Texas and the nation receive toward endeavors such as education, transportation and health care. Census results also inform congressional representation.

The Census Bureau expects to incorporate the most current guidance from health care authorities to ensure that staff members and the public remain safe and healthy.

Until then, North Texans can do their part in the comfort of their own homes to help make sure the data the Census Bureau will report accurately reflects what the growing region looks like. While adults will answer the questions, the whole family could benefit from the lessons of the process. This is also an opportunity for kids learning remotely to discover how easy it is to participate and how valuable the information is to policymakers.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area remains one of the fastest-growing regions in the nation, with a population of more than 7.5 million. The region typically adds more than 1 million new residents every 10 years. Its population in 2010 was more than 6.3 million, according to the Census Bureau.

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