Along The Rim of Alaska, The Once-A-Decade U.S. Census Begins In Toksook Bay

  
Via:  larry-hampton  •  one month ago  •  7 comments

Along The Rim of Alaska, The Once-A-Decade U.S. Census Begins In Toksook Bay
Near the iced-over Bering Sea, parka-clad workers for the U.S. Census Bureau are gathering in a remote fishing village along the southwestern rim of Alaska to resume a U.S. tradition seen only once a decade — a count of every person living in the country.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


Near the iced-over Bering Sea, parka-clad workers for the U.S. Census Bureau are gathering in a remote fishing village along the southwestern rim of Alaska to resume a U.S. tradition seen only once a decade — a count of every person living in the country.

After years of largely under-the-radar planning by the federal government and months of turmoil arising from the Trump administration's failed push to add a citizenship question, the 2020 census officially begins Tuesday in Toksook Bay, Alaska — population 590, according to the 2010 head count.

The bureau's director, Steven Dillingham, is expected to arrive by plane to attend a ceremony at the gymnasium of Nelson Island School, where community members are marking the day with traditional Yup'ik dancing and drumming.

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Larry Hampton
1  seeder  Larry Hampton    one month ago

In Toksook Bay and some other rural parts of the country, however, they won't be arriving in the mail. Instead, census workers are collecting people's responses through in-person visits, beginning with the home of Lizzie Chimiugak Nenguryarr, an elder of Toksook Bay. Dillingham, the bureau's director, is himself expected to interview Nenguryarr for the first enumeration of the 2020 census.

"It's overwhelming for people to come in and say this is such a big honor," Nenguryarr says in Yup'ik through interpretation by one of her daughters, Katie Schwartz Nuiyaaq. "This is just one in every day that comes rolling in."

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Larry Hampton
1.1  seeder  Larry Hampton  replied to  Larry Hampton @1    one month ago

Toksook Bay has seen a flurry of activity these past few days. The day before the count, classes ended early at Nelson Island School to allow mourners to pay their respects to a former resident, George Paul Miisaq, whose body was returned home to be buried in the village cemetery.

A day earlier, Nenguryarr, who is a locally renowned member of an Yup'ik dancing group, held an early celebration for what she considered to be at least her 90th birthday, based on a baptismal record.

"I want everybody to show love and compassion towards all human beings, young and old," Nenguryarr said.

 
 
 
Kavika
2  Kavika     one month ago

American Indians and Alaska native are the most under counted groups in the country. Many natives don't trust the government (with good reason) someone coming to our village or res and saying we are from the government isn't something that will inspire cooperation. 

Also like the village in this article the remoteness of many of the villages and reservations is another problem and the government has yet to figure that out. 

Perhaps this year and census this will change. 

Good article Larry. 

 
 
 
Kavika
2.1  Kavika   replied to  Kavika @2    one month ago

Here is a link to an article with more information on the Alaska census.

https://newsmaven.io/indiancountrytoday/news/census-count-is-an-act-of-rebellion-PGuuadr2T0eEGXz8QffWtg

 
 
 
Larry Hampton
2.2  seeder  Larry Hampton  replied to  Kavika @2    one month ago

Thanks Kavika. 
It reminded me of voter suppression in North Dakota ( and other states ) Indians may vote, but now they have to have an ID with an address. Not all the dwellings or folks on reservations have addresses though. 
How then does the census bureau figure it is going to get an accurate count?

 
 
 
Kavika
2.2.2  Kavika   replied to  Larry Hampton @2.2.1    one month ago

Sadly both North and South Dakota are in that arena among many other states. 

 
 
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