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Why Kentucky Nonprofits Can't Afford an Inaccurate Census Count

Flickr/Creative Commons/Jeremy W. Osborne

Non-profits in Kentucky are being urged to take steps that will help ensure an accurate count in the U.S. census. 

From health and education to nutrition and housing assistance, Kentucky has many statewide programs supported by federal funding that’s appropriated based on census results. 

One study finds that an inaccurate count may cause the commonwealth to lose more than $2,000 per person, per year in federal funding. 

Danielle Clore heads the Kentucky Nonprofit Network and says such groups are uniquely qualified to help overcome potential barriers to a complete and accurate count.

“We know there are hard to count populations out there and those are typically the populations that non-profits are coming into contact with on a daily basis," Clore stated.

Clore says an inaccurate count could cause Kentuckians to rely more heavily on non-profits for services they typically receive through federally-funded programs. 

The Kentucky Nonprofit Network has launched a campaign called “Nonprofits Count.” It’s made up of various organizations, including Catholic Charities of Louisville, Feeding Kentucky, and the Kentucky Head Start Association. 

Non-profits are developing tools to boost participation in the census by historically under-counted populations such as minorities, the poor, and immigrants.  As an example, some non-profits are planning to provide assistance with online questionnaires in areas that struggle with broadband access.

The results of the 2020 census could impact the quality of life in Kentucky for the next decade.

Lisa is a Scottsville native and WKU alum. She has worked in radio as a news reporter and anchor for 18 years. Prior to joining WKU Public Radio, she most recently worked at WHAS in Louisville and WLAC in Nashville. She has received numerous awards from the Associated Press, including Best Reporter in Kentucky. Many of her stories have been heard on NPR.
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