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Congreso de Latinos Unidos: Why the 2020 Census matters to us

The 2020 Census matters to our community, families, and staff — the entire Congreso de Latinos Unidos familia. It informs how critical resources are allocated, which has an immense impact on our day to day experiences like traveling to work, eating lunch at school, or going to the doctor.

At Congreso, we use census data to learn more about the community we’re serving. We also share that data when applying for grants or making our case for support to potential funders, like those on our corporate advisory council. For example, if a large number of young adults in our community respond that they do not have a high school diploma, it makes sense for us to continue our E3 Program, which helps individuals to obtain their GED diploma.

Census data is a powerful tool that helps identify some of the challenges the community may be facing, like low educational achievement or homeowner rates, poverty, and more. With this information, Congreso can gauge the demand for local and federal programs and resources. We offer a variety of health, education, workforce development, housing, and family services to support individuals and families, and census data helps to demonstrate the need for them.

If households do not participate in the Census, that could result in an undercount. An undercount would deprive our community of critical resources over the next 10 years. It also means that Congreso would not have an accurate picture of the community we aim to serve and support. This would make it harder for us to provide effective services and to make the case for additional resources and programming.

The people Congreso serves should fill out the Census and help us to ensure that our community has the dollars and representation it needs to address challenges and to offer a better quality of life. We know that your participation in the Census will help us on our mission to enable individuals and families in predominantly Latino neighborhoods to achieve economic self-sufficiency and well-being.

Kensington Voice is one of more than 20 news organizations producing Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project on economic mobility. Read more at or follow on Twitter at @BrokeInPhilly.

Editors: Zari Tarazona, Jillian Bauer-Reese / Story Designer: Jillian Bauer-Reese / Translator: Diana Cristancho