To mark the one year countdown to the start of Census 2020, Ceiba organized a Workshop/Rally to inform community residents, Latino nonprofit stakeholders and the Hispanic media about the significance of the upcoming Census and the urgency of working to ensure that there is a complete count in our neighborhoods.
The purpose of the Workshop/Rally at Ceiba on April 1, 2019 was to:
Inform people who are new to the Census
Reach allies who know about the Census but have not yet taken action
Motivate the two groups of people above to be active in ensuring a complete count
The Workshop/Rally featured remarks and presentations by:
US Census Spokesperson
Philadelphia Complete Count Committee's Executive Director, Stephanie Reid
The location and backdrop of the Workshop/Rally buttressed the call to action and highlighted the resources available to help people engage in the Census effort.
Ceiba is the leading advocacy and coalition building organization in Philadelphia's Latino community. Ceiba's Executive Director, Will Gonzalez, is a member of the Philadelphia Complete Count Committee. He is the Chair of the Immigrant and Limited English Proficiency Subcommittee of the Philadelphia Complete Count Committee.
Ceiba is also active in helping unauthorized immigrants build their economic base by using free tax preparation and application assistance for Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs) as gateways to asset-building. On select Mondays, Ceiba organizes ITIN information workshops. Those workshops are well attended. On Monday, April 1, 2019, Ceiba leveraged the audience that attends its ITIN workshop. It scheduled the ITIN workshop to maximize the opportunity for ITIN workshop attendees to participate in the Census Workshop/Rally. The participation of unauthorized immigrants at the event highlighted the challenges to a complete count posed by the possible addition of a citizenship question in the 2020 Census.
The backdrop for the Workshop/Rally at Ceiba was a computer lab. This called attention to the role that digital technology will play in the 2020 Census. The importance of internet access and digital skills runs across various parts of the Census:
People interested in applying for the many jobs available with the Census Bureau will need computer access to submit their applications
New Census Bureau employees will need strong, fast, reliable access to the Internet to take the mandatory online training
One of the ways to complete the 2020 Census is online, this can pose challenges for those who do not have access to the internet or need help in filling out the Census
Computer labs at nonprofit neighborhood based organizations can help people apply for Census jobs; take the mandatory online training if they are hired; and complete the 2020 Census online questionnaire