ALBANY – New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo kicked off the State’s campaign to make sure every New Yorker is counted in the upcoming 2020 Census this week.
The Governor hosted the State’s first Census Conference to raise awareness about the Census and engage advocates, community-based organizations, community leaders and local officials to ensure a complete count.
“This census comes at a particular time in this nation’s history and it is a difficult time, it is an ugly time, it is a divisive time,” said Cuomo. “You have the social fabric of this country being tested and stretched in a way I have never seen it before. You have anger, you have a lack of tolerance. We have a fear among our new Americans, we have division even in this state. … New York’s voice is so vital at this time in this country’s history, speaking to the issues that we are speaking to, because New York is different.”
“The Census counts and calibrates the voice of New York. And our voice cannot be diminished. Our voice has to be heard loud and clear, because what we believe and what we stand for in terms of what makes this nation great and what made this nation great, is a voice the other states need to hear,” Cuomo continued. “Because nobody says it as proudly, as loudly, as clearly as this great State of New York. So make it count.”
The Conference consisted of breakout sessions featuring administration officials to help answer questions from these key stakeholders about a variety of topics, including how to participate in the application process for potential funding that will flow through counties; how communities can coordinate efforts and use resources the State has made available; how to reach at-risk and hard-to-count communities; what leadership and messaging tactics to use to ensure a complete count; and how to achieve a complete count by improving digital literacy and opening up places for individuals to fill their Census online.
The Census Conference follows the recent formation of the Governor’s Census Council, which is being co-chaired by Martin Luther King III, Lucy Liu and Lin-Manuel Miranda to lead the State charge to ensure every New Yorker is counted in the upcoming 2020 census.