A report from the 2020 U.S. Census shows Black people, Native Americans and Latinos were undercounted while white and Asian people were overcounted, according to NBC News.
The results from the report continue a trend from the Census Bureau of undercounting underrepresented groups and over-counting non-Hispanic white people. One of the reasons was that these groups lived in areas that were “hard to reach” like rural communities and places with limited to no access to the internet.
From NBC News:
The data released Thursday was the result of two internal analyses that collected data through a sample survey of demographic records. The findings suggested the 2020 census missed Hispanics and Latinos at more than three times the rate in 2010 (an undercount rate of roughly 5 percent, as opposed to 1.5 percent in 2010).
The Black population was undercounted at a rate of 3.3 percent, up from 2.1 percent in 2010. Indigenous people living on reservations were undercounted at a rate of 5.6 percent, higher than the 2010 rate of 4.9 percent. Indigenous people not living on reservations were not miscounted.
In 2020, door-knocking operations were suspended because of the coronavirus pandemic. Workers were not able to start until later in the summer, according to NBC News.
But why is it so important to get an accurate count of these underrepresented communities? Inaccurate data can lead to vulnerable groups being left out and could change the important resources these communities receive.
According to NBC News, another factor that affected the 2020 Census was former President Trump, who was allowed by the Supreme Court to stop gathering census information early. Then again, the Census Bureau did argue that they wanted to stop the count (no pun intended), so they could start processing data to meet the deadline for reporting census results to the president and states on Dec. 31.
More from NBC News:
Data from the sample survey also suggested the non-Hispanic white population and the Asian population were over-counted, and the difference in over-counting between 2010 and 2020 was statistically significant.
The data crunched by the bureau illustrates the racial makeup of America and helps determine the distribution of federal aid and how many congressional seats and Electoral College votes each state gets, among other things