From many countries, one proud group of people is expected to make history as an emerging immigrant group once this year’s census is counted. And that has a lot of potential benefits for Caribbean people who are living the American dream.
An accurate count of this group will increase the community’s share of federal funding and congressional representation that could translate into more assistance for small businesses, better schools and better health care.
Activists say the 2000 census under-counted this group mostly because there was no way to specify country of origin on the questionnaire – a dilemma the Hispanic community faced 20 years ago.
That’s why there’s a massive nationwide campaign telling people to select their race then write in their country of origin – an option that wasn’t available 10 years ago on the last census form. Census workers were dispatched to every community to assist and encourage people to fill out the form.
It’s a point that seems to have resonated with Caribbean people in New York City and around country. Now more than ever before, they’re more informed, more eager to be counted and more aware that there is strength and “money” in numbers.