Census rejecting some big-city complaints of 2020 undercounts
Some of the largest U.S. cities challenging their 2020 census numbers aren’t getting the results they hoped for from the U.S. Census Bureau — an effort by Memphis to increase its official population resulted in three people being subtracted from its count during an initial appeal.
Some successes have come from challenges to totals of “group quarters” — dorms, jails and nursing homes. They were among the most difficult to count as campuses closed and prisons and nursing homes were locked down at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Census Bureau created a separate program to handle these challenges.
The Census Bureau has received more than 100 submissions in total for its two challenge programs from cities, towns and villages of all sizes across the U.S.
Officials in Boston, a hub of higher education, believed the 2020 census missed more than 6,000 students living in university housing and 419 inmates at local jails. The Census Bureau approved the submission from Boston, which had 675,647 residents in the 2020 census, of which the city claimed 41,776 were students living in student housing.
“It’s no surprise that many of these special populations were miscounted due to the untimely and completely unanticipated emergence of a global pandemic that just happened to perfectly coincide with the 2020 count,” said Susan Strate, senior program manager at the UMass Donahue Institute, which assisted Boston in its challenge.
May 15, 2023