Every 10 years, the federal government conducts a roll call of the public to understand the nation’s population. The census count looks at size, sex, age and race of each household, community and state in order to get an accurate snapshot of the United States. As of today, public resources and political representation distributed to these places are based on decade-old data from the last national count in 2010.
Over the next few months, every person in America will dictate how many dollars their state receives for things, such as healthcare, housing, food, education and infrastructure every year through 2030. Essentially, to get proportionate funds — for everything from emergency resources and roads to higher education — each person needs to be counted.
In 2016 alone, Mississippi received more than $10 billion in federal spending across 55 programs. But, according to studies, nearly 800,000 Mississippians — or about 27 percent of the state — live in what’s called “hard-to-count” neighborhoods and risk being left out of the count (learn more here). For data on how much money through federal programs goes to Mississippi, click here.