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Napolitano, Becerra, Roybal-Allard, Linda Sanchez Respond to Boycott to Census in California

July 2, 2009
Press Release

(Norwalk, CA) Today Representative Grace F. Napolitano (CA-38), Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34), Rep. Xavier Becerra (CA-31) and Rep. Linda Sanchez (CA-39) issued the following statement in response to calls from the Mexican American Political Association urging immigrants to boycott the 2010 Census:

“As Members of Congress from California, we have been working for years to ensure that the Census 2010 provides a fair and equal count of all our communities.  Without an accurate portrait of our state, we cannot address the needs of our diverse population.  A boycott would be a significant step backward in the progress we have made to make sure Latinos, and indeed, all minorities, are treated equally.  To not be counted would disenfranchise our communities and jeopardize vital resources, including federal funding for schools, health care, job training and infrastructure, all of which are critical to the growing Latino population in California.

“While immigration reform is a very important issue that we support and must be addressed, the long-term consequences of not being counted would have an impact in the lives of our families throughout the next decade.  President Obama has put his weight behind comprehensive immigration reform, and we must continue working together to accomplish this goal. In the meantime, we encourage every community to be counted in the 2010 Census.”

Services such as Head Start programs, public daycare for children, school lunch programs, public schools, public transportation, public emergency rooms and hospitals, just to name a few, are based on money received from federal funds, which is based on the number of people living in each state, as counted by the Census.  An accurate count helps the federal government allocate approximately more than $300 billion of federal funds annually for these and other programs and services in the states.