State Makes Push to Respond to Census at Emergency Food Distribution

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Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz joined Foodshare at its food distribution site in East Hartford on Wednesday to hand out flyers and U.S. Census water bottles. She is urging people to fill out the census by the Sept. 30 deadline.

So far 96.4 percent of households in Connecticut have finished the census, but they are trying to get the remaining 1.6 percent who have not.

“It’s important because for each person that we miss, a community will lose out on $2,900 a year or $29,000 over the course of 10 years. So, for a family of four that’s almost $129,000 that their community will lose if that family isn’t counted,” Bysiewicz said.

This is Foodshare’s 23rd week of distributing food at Rentschler Field in East Hartford. They have served 165 cars and distributed 5.4 million pounds of food. This is all in addition to the 260 partner agencies they work with daily.

“We’ve done surveys in the parking lot. Seventy percent of the people, it’s their first time ever being food insecure,” said Dom Piccini, the logistics manager for Foodshare.

So, for some, filling out the census might be the last thing on their mind.

“We picked today’s event because we know that a lot of the people who come to it come from hard-to-count areas like Hartford and East Hartford and the capital region. We wanted to make sure people knew that time is running out,” said Bysiewicz.

The 2020 U.S. Census is required for anyone living in the United States, but there are billions of reasons you'd want to take it: lawmakers use census data to divvy up money for important resources like hospitals, fire stations and roads. Lawmakers will rely on this year's census data until 2030, so now's your chance to make sure your household is counted where it counts the most!

“It’s fantastic because it’s the demographic they’re going after. We’re doing 1,700 to 2,200 cars a day and it’s a great place for them to try to educate people and collect some of that census data to make sure we get the funds for the state,” Piccini said.

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