Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Pandemic Adds Urgency To Census Effort On Tribal Lands


Scott Kalama helps Louie Pitt fill out a census form online in Warm Springs, March 12, 2020. Emily Cureton/OPB

The pandemic has sharpened divides that were already there - divides between who is most at risk of being exposed to disease, where health resources are funneled, and what political power looks like as disputes between local, state and federal jurisdictions grow more heated.

On sovereign tribal lands within Oregon, leaders are reflecting on these problems in light of a once-in-a-decade tool used to redistribute money and power: the U.S. Census.

Tribal nations are going big on Census 2020, with advocates deep into a public relations campaign to get people to fill out forms by mail or online. The goal is to limit how much ground that field teams will need to cover starting in August, when census takers will go door-to-door to gather data from people who haven't responded.


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