Read the script


CensusGirl: Good afternoon, New Yorkers. I am here just in time. How many of you are going to do the census? … You know, when they count the people.

Shumi: I’m going to do it.

CensusGirl: (to Shumi) Good for you.

CensusGirl: (to the room) Some of you may not know about the census. You are busy and may think it doesn’t matter. The census matters. It matters a lot.

Jing: What’s the purpose of the census?

CensusGirl: We work hard and pay taxes. The government collects billions of dollars from our taxes to pay for schools, hospitals, job training, roads… The more people counted in the census, the more money we get in the community.

Hafez: Are they giving money to us?

Angelique: Not exactly. I think she means… If a lot of seniors are counted in the census, they give more money for senior centers and services for seniors.

Cristina: Dad, if a lot of kids are counted, there’s more money for schools and after-school programs. (to CensusGirl) Am I right?

CensusGirl: That’s right!

Teresa: How do you do the census?

Cesar: Oh, I know. You can do the census with a pen and paper or you can do it online. I’m going to do it online at this library.

Jose: I want to be counted, but… I don’t want to give my information.

CensusGirl: Your information is safe. The Census Bureau cannot give your personal information to anyone. Nobody. Not immigration, not the tax people, not your landlord, not even the police. It is against the law to give your personal information to them. … The census does not ask about immigration status. It is for everyone—young people, old people, people with papers, people without papers. The census is everyone’s chance to be counted, even newborn children.

Carmen: Excuse me, but is that about the census?

Shumi: Yes, it is.

Carmen: Do you mind if I ask… Is the census important?

Shumi: The census is very important. It matters a lot!

Carmen: I thought so. Count me in.

Shumi: (to camera) I’m counting on you.

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