77.3% of the households in Puerto Rico have been counted as part of the 2020 Census, with just over three weeks to complete the period to complete the form.
Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González explained that she is continuing her efforts to get 100% of households to complete the 2020 Census before the September 30 deadline.
In a virtual meeting with Census Bureau officials, González discussed the response rate in Puerto Rico, possible challenges that enumerators are facing, and ensuring that they have the necessary resources to achieve a complete household count.
Of the 77.3% of the households counted up to September 2 in the Census portal, 32.4% have been by self-response and the remaining 44.9% through a follow-up operation by the Census enumerators.
The Census has about 5,500 to 6,000 active employees in Puerto Rico.
“Although we are no longer the jurisdiction with the lowest overall response rate, we do rank last in auto-response, that is, in voluntary participation. This is a substantial drop if we compare it not only with the national index, but also with the participation in auto response we had in 2010 of 53.8%, ”said the resident commissioner.
Originally, the Census office had stipulated October 31 as the date for the closure of its field operations due to complications from the Covid-19 pandemic. However, this was brought forward a month.
The Resident Commissioner advocated in a letter sent to the Census Bureau on August 11 for the October 31 deadline to be reinstated.
In the letter, he expressed concern about the possibility that ending a month earlier will affect the accuracy and completeness of the count in jurisdictions with low self-response, as is the case of Puerto Rico, which in turn has had less time to respond. to the 2020 Census compared to all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
“Considering the events that have affected the island in recent months, the earthquakes that began in January and then the coronavirus pandemic, we want to make sure that initiatives are being promoted to increase the partition of Puerto Ricans and that the census takers have the right resources to collect 23% of the households that have not been counted, “he said.
People who have not yet completed the Census can complete the form online by visiting 2020census.gov/es, by phone at 1-844-426-2020 (in Spanish) or by completing and mailing the paper questionnaire.