DiscoverDemocracy WorksPublic health depends on the Census
Public health depends on the Census

Public health depends on the Census

Update: 2020-04-06



The COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. intensified just as the 2020 Census was getting underway in earnest. As Americans fill their days with news about the new coronavirus, the Census Bureau is doing everything it can to spread the word about completing the Census online while grappling with how to do critical in-person follow up during a time of social distancing. As our guest this week explains, the consequences of an undercount directly impact public health in significant ways.

Jenny Van Hook is the Roy C. Buck Professor of Sociology and Demography at Penn State and a former member of the Census Advisory Board. She was an expert witness in the legal fight over the efforts to add a citizenship question to this year’s Census and has written about the Census in The Conversation and other outlets.

Census Day was April 1, but there’s still time to complete your Census online at

This episode begins with an ad for Lyceum, a new app that’s specifically for educational podcasts. Learn more and join the conversation with other listeners at

Related Episodes

It’s good to be counted – our interview with Jenny from May 2018

Episode Credits

This episode was recorded on March 31, 2020. It was engineered by Jenna Spinelle, edited by Chris Kugler, and reviewed by Emily Reddy.











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Public health depends on the Census

Public health depends on the Census

Penn State McCourtney Institute for Democracy/The Democracy Group