TGB Urges All Tribal Members to Be Counted in 2020 Census
By Joe Morey
A Lac du Flambeau tribal member, Marilyn Miller, working out of the Chicago office of the United States Census Bureau as liaison to the northern Wisconsin tribes, gave a presentation to Lac Courte Oreilles tribal members at the General Membership meeting on Nov. 2, 2019.
Miller explained how important it is that tribal members be counted. She said the 2000 Census under counted Natives by 12% and the Bureau stepped up their efforts to reach Native peoples. In 2010, the number was reduced to an under count of 4%.
“The count will last 10 years so we are trying to have zero under count,” Miller stated. “There is 675 billion dollars appropriated to the Tribes annually through states or direct to Tribes and where these funds go is tied in to the Census count.”
LCO Secretary-Treasurer Michelle Beaudin said LCO is only being funded at 40% because we are being under counted.
“When you fill out the forms, it does not go to Housing,” Beaudin said. “It won’t cause an eviction. Nothing will be reported to Housing.”
Miller explained that even LCO descendants who are not tribal members can still claim Lac Courte Oreilles. She also said parents who have kids in the service should make sure their kids are counted by informing the Census takers that they are LCO members.
LCO Vice-Chairwoman Lorraine Gouge added, “A 10-year period is a long time so we have to get everyone counted.”