Census 2020: California counts

With National Census Day (April 1, 2020) rapidly approaching, the entire country is gearing up to count a record number of persons. Of course, like any endeavor the federal government undertakes these days, it is steeped in controversy.

A citizenship question on the Census form, should it pass legal muster, will produce a census undercount of as many as 6.5 million people, predominantly from “Hispanic, immigrant and foreign born populations,” according to the testimony of five former Census Bureau directors. To allay some fears, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross pledged at a Latino Coalition-sponsored event last October that all information would be kept confidential. 

To help in understanding the 2020 Census, 3RiversNews presents a quick take on what the decennial census is intended to do and how this process works on the federal, state, and county levels. This is the first U.S. Census that will be conducted largely online.

Each of the five speakers were presenters at a March 15 workshop entitled A Media Briefing on the 2020 Census: What’s at stake and what’s at risk for Tulare County.

Dr. Edward Flores, sociologist, UC Merced, started the program with a census overview. Eddie Valero, Tulare County Supervisor, District 4, furnished a county perspective. Greg Gomez, mayor of Farmersville, spoke on what’s at stake for cities and said that the US Constitution stipulates that all “persons” (not just “citizens”) be counted. 

Lali Moheno, representing Tulare Kings Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, spoke to the fear of deportation that some immigrants live with everyday. Moheno made a plea for help in resisting the current administration and its fomentation of an immigration crisis.   

Diana Crofts-Pelayo, public information officer for California Complete Count, outlines how a $60 million allocation aims to ensure that more Californians are counted than ever before. For questions and more information on the State of California’s efforts, call (916) 852-2020 or email


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