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Belmont Cragin, Hermosa

With Census Response Rates Lagging, State Rep Throws Event To Boost Northwest Side Participation

Neighbors can get free school supplies, raffle prizes, elotes, masks and more when they fill out the 2020 Census at the Friday event.

Illinois Coalition of Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR), along with community partners Enlace and Taller de Jose, took to the streets of Little Village to promote Census Day.
Brandon Lee/ ICIRR
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BELMONT CRAGIN — State Rep. Will Guzzardi (D-Chicago) is hosting a census event this week to boost census response rates in Belmont Cragin, Hermosa and Avondale.

Guzzardi’s event is scheduled for 3-6 p.m. Friday in the parking lot of Metropolitan Family Services, 3249 N. Central Ave.

Neighbors can get free school supplies, raffle prizes, elotes, masks and more when they fill out the 2020 Census. Census ambassadors will be on hand to help neighbors fill out the survey on the spot.

Citywide, the census response rate was 59.1 percent as of Aug. 30, according to city data.

But some wards on the Northwest Side are falling behind the city average and ward-specific completion goals.

In the 30th Ward, which includes Belmont Cragin and parts of Avondale, 55.3 percent of households have completed the census response rate as of Aug. 30, according to city data. The city’s goal is 72.3 percent of that ward’s households completing the census.

In the 31st Ward, which includes parts of Belmont Cragin, Logan Square and Hermosa, 53.4 percent of households have completed the census, compared to the city’s goal of about 71 percent, according to the data.

In the 33rd Ward, which includes parts of Avondale, Irving Park, Ravenswood Manor and Albany Park, 60.1 percent of households have filled out the census, slightly higher than the citywide rate. But the goal is 75 percent completion.

You can complete the census online. It usually takes about 10 minutes.

The U.S. Census Bureau uses the form to count the country’s entire population every decade as mandated by the constitution. The decennial count is important because it determines federal funding for education, child care, workforce training and health care across the state. It also determines the number of political representatives each state receives.

Earlier this year, Gov. JB Pritzker said the state risks losing $195 million per year for each 1 percent of the population that isn’t counted.

Illinois is also projected to lose at least one downstate congressional seat due to population loss.

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