Census Bureau Reaches Out To Latino Community | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Census Bureau Reaches Out To Latino Community

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At the office, census worker Juan Jose Callejas usually dresses in a dark, two-piece suit, accented with a conservative tie, and has one of those ubiquitous ID badges dangling from his neck.

But when he heads into the field to conduct outreach in Northern Virginia's Latino community, Callejas changes his attire."If I show up dressed with a suit like this, wearing this kind of badge and saying I work for the federal government," he said, "I don't go very far."

That's one of the Census Bureau's biggest challenges: How to convince people who have reason to fear government, typically political refugees and undocumented immigrants, that participating in the count is in their best interest?

To meet that challenge, the Bureau has created eight videos aimed at different ethnic groups. They're posted on YouTube.

One of the videos features Latino activist Antonio Flores. "Churches, schools," he says in the video, "Every single institution in every community needs to be part of the process."

The 2010 Census will be taken in March and April. The data collected will determine where $300 billion of taxpayers' money is spent.

David Schultz reports...

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