- By Native News Online Staff
TOKSOOK BAY, Alaska — Census Day—April 1, 2020—is still more than two months away, but Census 2020 is beginning its count in Toksook Bay, Alaska on January 21 to ensure everyone is counted.
In a new conference held at Toksook Bay on Friday, Census 2020 officials shared that as an agency, it is going to great lengths to count everyone living in the United States.
“This is the most comprehensive attempt to ensure everyone is counted in history,” said Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, who was in Alaska to kickoff Census 2020.
The official census takes place across the United States once every decade. American Indians and Alaska Natives have been undercounted for decades and roughly one quarter (26 percent) of Natives currently live in hard-to-count Census tracts, according to the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.
Dillingham said Census 2020 is beginning the Alaska count this early because of the remoteness of the land creates accessibility challenges. In addition, many residents leave following the spring thaw to fish and hunt or for other warm-weather jobs, making it difficult to get an accurate count in the days leading up to Census Day (April 1).
“Some of the ground it frozen, so we send census takers out on snowmobiles to reach residents living in remote areas,” said Dillingham.
The remaining portion of the state of Alaska, including Anchorage and Fairbanks, will be counted with the rest of the country beginning in March.
More Stories Like ThisCleveland MLB Team Name to Change from 'Indians' to 'Guardians'
Winona LaDuke Released From Jail With Conditions to Avoid Enbridge Line 3 Work Areas
Interior Department to Consult With Community Leaders on Major Changes to NAGPRA
Alaska Native Groups Sue Gov. Dunleavy Over Draining a Subsidized Power Fund
Remains of Missing Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Tribal Member Found in Lake Superior
Native Perspective. Native Voices. Native News.
We launched Native News Online because the mainstream media often overlooks news that is important is Native people. We believe that everyone in Indian Country deserves equal access to news and commentary pertaining to them, their relatives and their communities. That's why the story you’ve just finished was free — and we want to keep it that way, for all readers. We hope you'll consider making a donation to support our efforts so that we can continue publishing more stories that make a difference to Native people, whether they live on or off the reservation. Your donation will help us keep producing quality journalism and elevating Indigenous voices. Any contribution of any amount — big or small — gives us a better, stronger future and allows us to remain a force for change. Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you.