White House Equitable Data Working Group Hears About Undercount of Young Children

Dr. William P. O’Hare

On October 26, 2021, The White House Equitable Data Working Group held a meeting with several professional groups including the Population Association of America (PAA) and the Association of Population Centers (APC).  The Equitable Data Working Group was established as part of the Administrations approach to advancing equity.   The Working Group was established to identify inadequacies in our existing Federal data collection infrastructure  and develop a strategy for improving equitable data practices in the Federal government The meeting was an opportunity for professional data-focused organizations to provide input to the Working Group. 

The President of the Population Association of America, Dr. Robert Hummer of the University of North Carolina, presented several  equitable data concerns for consideration including the high net undercount of young children in the Census and Census Bureau surveys.  This was one of a handful of ideas raised by representatives from PAA and APC.

Later in the meeting Dr. William O’Hare from the PAA contingent noted that the U.S. Census Bureau has recently established a cross-directorate team which will attempt to get more accurate data on young children and help prepare the Census Bureau for the 2030 Census.  The Census Bureau initiative was raised as a model other statistical agencies might want to emulate to address the widespread problem of young children being under-represented in government data collection activities.

The fact that the issue of the undercount of young children is getting this kind of recognition is evidence that advocacy of the Count All Kids Campaign has had some success.

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