Breaking down the 2020 Census data: How the data will be used for redistricting

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The U.S. Census Bureau announced new data from the 2020 Census results, shining a light on how much the United States has grown over the last 10 years.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WDVM) — The U.S. Census Bureau announced new data from the 2020 Census results, shining a light on how much the United States has grown over the last 10 years.

The data shows how the population in the united states has grown and more specifically where it has grown. The population of U.S. metro areas grew by 9% from 2010 to 2020, resulting in 86% of the population living in U.S. metro areas in 2020, compared to 85% in 2010 according to the 2020 U.S. Census.

This newest round of census data also provided more in-depth findings on race and ethnicity. The U.S. Census Bureau rolled out a new two-question format for the race and ethnicity portion of the census which allowed for a more thorough and accurate depiction of how people self-identify. This lead to a more accurate portrait of how people report their Hispanic origin and race within the context of a two-question format. These changes reveal that the U.S. population is much more multiracial and more diverse than what was measured in the past.

The data reports that the White population remained the largest race or ethnic group in the United States, with 204.3 million people identifying as White alone. Furthermore, 235.4 million people reported White alone or in combination with another group. However, the White alone population has decreased by 8.6% since 2010. The data also shows that people within the Two or More Races population, which is also known as the Multiracial population, has significantly increased since 2010. The Multiracial population was previously measured at 9 million people in 2010 and is now 33.8 million people in 2020, which is a 276% increase.

The next largest racial populations were the Asian alone or in combination group which stands at 24 million people. Then, the American Indian and Alaska Native alone or in combination group recorded 9.7 million people. Finally, the Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone or in combination group recorded 1.6 million people.

The Hispanic or Latino population, which includes people of any race, was 62.1 million in 2020. This population has grown 23%, while the population that was not of Hispanic or Latino origin grew 4.3% since 2010.

This data will also be used for redistricting on the state and county levels. Dr. Ron Jarmin, acting director of the U.S. Census Bureau, explains the data helps to allocate the correct number of congresspeople per state based on their population.

“These data play an important role in our democracy, and also begin to illuminate how the local and demographic makeup of our nation has changed over the last decade,” Dr. Jarmin explained.

Dr. Jarmin also went on to highlight that it is too early to speculate on undercounts or overcounts for any specific demographic group and the Census Bureau will be releasing results from a post enumeration survey in 2022.

The U.S. Census Bureau also has measures to protect user data while collecting demographics and statistics for the census. The Census Bureau used differential privacy when collecting the results of the 2020 Census. Differential privacy is a form of mathematics, or a mathematical approach, which was inspired by modern cryptography that disguises an individual’s identity in published data. differential privacy adds statistical noise, or slight alterations, to the recorded data to mask or obscure the identities of the people behind the numbers.

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