CBCF and Fair Count Launch 2020 Census Heat Maps for Hard-to-Count Communities

‘Black America Counts’ Tools Available for Download and Use for CBC Member States

March 13, 2020

Dr. Erica Southerland

Lauren Zehyoue

WASHINGTON — The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (CBCF) and Fair Count, Inc. today launched ‘Black America Counts’ to identify hard-to-count (HTC) communities across the nation to help guide outreach and mobilization efforts with the goal of increasing census participation. CBCF’s Center for Policy Research and Analysis implemented Fair Count’s model to identify and map Black and Hispanic communities that may not have internet access, as well as other communities that lack the resources to accurately complete the 2020 Census in numbers comparable to other communities, populations, or regions.

The maps, an initiative of ‘Black America Counts,’ identify the areas of the greatest need at the county level. To date, heat maps for 25 states represented by members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) are available for download at By March 23, subsequent heat maps will be completed to increase participation in the 2020 Census by Black and Hispanic populations in all 50 states. Each heat map is presented as an ‘action fact sheet’ with state-specific data and resources. State HTC zones are also presented on the fact sheets.

“Zones are composed of counties that were divided based on similar HTC neighborhoods and other demographic data, which are used to guide targeted outreach and strategic planning,” said Dr. Jeanine Abrams McLean, vice president, Fair Count. Fair Count’s partnership in this larger national effort was created from its commitment to achieving a fair and accurate count of HTC populations in Georgia.

“We are proud to contribute to the vital work of the mobilization for the 2020 Census and the CBC Census Task force in particular,” said Dr. Menna Demessie, CBCF’s vice president, Center for Policy Analysis and Research. “This information will enable organizers and policymakers to build on existing data and research to better equip communities of color to fill out the census.” The official hashtags for this campaign are: #BlackAmericaCounts #ILeadIServeICount and #HearMeSeeMe.

Every 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau counts every person in America. That count steers hundreds of billions of dollars for critical services like health care and education; guides the drawing of lines for political districts and school zones; and informs businesses and employers about opportunities for growth and economic development. However, with every census, certain populations — particularly people of color and immigrants — are historically undercounted, resulting in a loss in both resources and political power.

About Fair Count

Founded by Stacey Abrams in 2019, Fair Count, Inc. is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to partnering with HTC communities to achieve a fair and accurate count of all people in Georgia and the nation in the 2020 Census and to strengthening the pathways to greater civic participation. For more information about Fair Count, visit

About the CBCF

Established in 1976, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (CBCF) is a non-partisan, nonprofit, public policy, research and educational institute committed to advancing the global black community by developing leaders, informing policy and educating the public. For more information, visit

# # #

Leave a Reply