September 9, 2020 — There is still time to complete the 2020 census, according to Miranda Ramos and Paloma Paterson, who are managing the census outreach project with the Community Foundation, which subcontracted with the county to do the work under a state grant.
The main change, Paterson reflects, is that “we haven’t physically been able to go to locations,” since the pandemic struck. But this year was the first time the census had been scheduled to be all, or mostly all online, so in some ways, the census effort was already geared up to reach people virtually. The census project is relying on ‘trusted messengers,’ or reputable social media influencers, to convince people of the importance of getting counted. “It’s all about relationships,” Ramos noted. “It always is.”
And there have been some successes. In some of the county’s 23 tracts, particularly Anderson Valley, Gualala/Point Arena, and Little River/Albion, Ramos reported that “we blew past their 2010 final self-response rate months ago.”
“That being said,” Paterson added, “that self-response is, like 54 percent.”
There is a shortage of enumerators during the pandemic. But there are assistants who can help you figure out the form at certain locations at certain times, like farmers markets or grocery stores. If you’d like to arrange to meet someone who can help you with the census, you can follow Mendocino Counts on Facebook to find out when and where an assistant will be.
And if you’d like to call or text Miranda Ramos in English or Spanish to get help from her directly, that number is (707) 336-2459.”If you call it, you’ll want to leave a voicemail, and I will get back to you pretty promptly,” she assured.