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April 01, 2020

A Message from Lehman College President Daniel Lemons

As we continue to take active steps to protect ourselves and our communities during this health crisis, I wanted to urge you not to forget about the importance of the 2020 Census on today, National Census Day.

It is worth remembering that the census determines how the federal government allocates more than $675 billion a year, including funds for education, disaster planning, transportation and public health – all as a direct result of our census responses.

The Bronx has some of the highest needs in the five boroughs but has also been historically hard to count. The overall response rate for New York City is 26 percent; in the Bronx, that number is slightly lower, at 25.9 percent. And New York City’s response rate is lower than that of the country as a whole

The funding our city relies on and our political clout will be jeopardized unless each of us respond to the census. New York State could lose two seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. If we have fewer people fighting for us, our voices will be diminished.

It will take you 10 minutes or less to complete the 2020 Census online or by phone and eliminate the need for a census worker to visit your home, which is safer for everyone. Remember:

  • There is no citizenship question; your immigration status doesn’t matter
  • The census is collecting responses in 13 languages
  • Babies count too – age is not a limiting factor.

It takes less than 10 minutes to complete — but the impact will be felt for the next 10 years. We have only one chance a decade to get this right. Complete the census right now — and tell your friends and family to do the same.

Thank you,

Daniel Lemons

Want to learn more? Check out www.cuny.edu/census


Daniel Lemons

Previous messages from President Lemons can be found here.