By on 8.24.20 in Carolina Demographics, Census 2020

Non-Response Follow-Up (NRFU) for the 2020 Census began nationwide on Tuesday, August 11th. Last week, the Census Bureau began releasing daily reports on total enumeration—the percent of housing units that have self-responded plus the percent that have been captured in NRFU —for the nation and all 50 states, DC., and Puerto Rico. This proportion ranges from 1.7% in Idaho to 29.1% in West Virginia.

Based on these reports, North Carolina, and the southeast more broadly, are currently far behind the national average in being counted.

Here are a few quick takeaways:

  • 5.3% of North Carolina housing units have been counted through NRFU (7th lowest rate).
    In addition to the 60% of housing units that had self-responded to the 2020 Census as of August 20th, another 5.3% of North Carolina housing units had been counted during NRFU, for a total response of 65.3%.North Carolina’s share of housing units counted in NRFU was the 7th lowest rate of all 50 states, DC, and Puerto Rico.
  • North Carolina has the 5th largest number of housing units not yet counted (1.6 million).

Based on housing unit estimates from 2019 and total response rates on August 20th, the top 5 states for number of units not yet counted are:

    1. Texas – 3.7 million
    2. California – 3.5 million
    3. Florida – 3.3 million
    4. New York – 2.7 million
    5. North Carolina – 1.6 million
  • The southeast has the lowest share of housing units counted through NRFU.
    As of August 20th, 8.7% of housing units had been counted through NRFU. In the southeast region—the seven states served by the Atlanta regional office (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina)—this proportion was 5.8%. This was significantly lower than any other regional office territory: Denver, the next lowest region, had 8.2% of its housing units enumerated in NRFU.

Four of the ten states with the lowest share of housing units counted through NRFU are served by the Atlanta regional office. These are: Alabama (4.8%), Florida (5.3%), North Carolina (5.3%), and Georgia (5.3%).

  • Low NRFU coverage in the southeast is compounding lower self-response rates.

The states covered by the Atlanta regional office have the lowest overall NRFU rate (5.8%) and the lowest overall self-response rate (60%). As a result, the total response is more than seven percentage points below the national average. The total response rates by Census region are (low to high):

    • Atlanta: 65.7%
    • Denver: 69.6%
    • New York: 71.9%
    • U.S. Total: 72.8%
    • Philadelphia: 75.9%
    • Los Angeles (includes Hawaii and Alaska): 77.5%
    • Chicago: 77.6%

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