Brazilian, Cape Verdean, and Portuguese community leaders across Massachusetts united to form the Portuguese-Speaking Complete Count Committee (PSCCC) for the 2010 US Census. We sought more representation and resources for our population groups and for the state as a whole.
The 2010 Census campaign has ended. The PSCCC oversaw a successful push to educate Portuguese speakers and encourage them to participate in the Census. Among our many achievements were:
- Directly reaching over 20,000 members of the community, in person, to address their questions and concerns regarding the Census.
- Completing hundreds of one-on-one consultation appointments with Census respondents with questions about the form, many of which occurred through official Quality Assistance Centers operated by the Census Bureau and hosted in PSCCC-affiliated offices.
- Delivering 14,000 flyers recommending responses to the race and ethnicity questions on the Census form, and directing readers to various community organizations for further assistance.
- Distributing thousands of copies of Zé Brasil & Tião Mineiro, a comic book published by the Census Bureau aimed at Brazilians nervous about participating in the Census.
- Liaising with religious leaders and groups around Massachusetts, who in turn gave presentations and distributed materials to their congregations.
- Coordinating dozens of media appearances by PSCCC members, including print and web advertisements, radio interviews, and television appearances. Together, these efforts reached hundreds of thousands of listeners and viewers across New England.
- Establishing connections with community organizations from Cape Cod to upstate New York in order to spread the pro-Census message.
MAPS’ target tracts outperformed city/town averages in all cases except Everett (which underperformed for many reasons). In areas where the 2010 response rate exceeded the 2000 rate, MAPS’ target districts surged even further ahead of the citywide increase (7% in Dorchester target blocks vs. 3% Boston total increase; 8% in Somerville target blocks vs. 3% city total increase). Likewise, in areas where the 2010 response rate was lower than the 2000 rate, MAPS’ target districts did not slide as steeply as the citywide totals (2% slide in Lowell target blocks vs. 4% citywide decrease).
We are proud that our community rose to the challenge and represented itself in the national count. But the work continues: the Census Bureau is working to process the results, which you can follow here. And the PSCCC is still working to bring changes to the Census reform that will reflect the true diversity and scope of Portuguese-speaking communities across America.
Informational materials from the PSCCC campaign:
- Census FAQ [available in PDF here] (Portuguese)
- How Do I Answer the Questions? (PDF) (Portuguese)
- Guia de Auxílio — full Portuguese translation of the Census form (PDF)
- Letter from Homeland Security regarding confidentiality of the Census — in [English] or [Portuguese]
- Hear our radio spots!
- Key Facts about the Census
- PSCCC Posters
- PSCCC Membership
- Subcommittee List, Membership and Upcoming Meetings
- Our kickoff press release
- November 5th PSCCC Press Conference
- WBUR Interview 1/29/10
- “Todo Mundo Conta,” the Census blog for Portuguese speakers
- October edition of the Census2010 Activities Update (PDF), which includes a section on Brazilian Day festivals
- Article in O Jornal