Alaska Census Comes to an Early End, Stark Divide in Response Rates

Counting for the 2020 Census ended Thursday, following a Supreme Court ruling earlier this week allowing the U.S. federal government to end the count two weeks early, according to Alaska Public Media.

“The decision by the Supreme Court is really disappointing for all Alaskans,” said Gabe Layman, head of the Alaska Census Working Group. “The way in which the Census count was affected in Alaska was really significant, particularly in our most remote and rural communities. And the additional time to count individuals in those communities would have made a tremendous difference to our state.”

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted outreach and in-person operations, which is a big deal for places like rural Alaska.

Figures from the census are used to determine how political representation and federal funding are distributed among all U.S. states. A census is taken every ten years.