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QUEENS, NY – With the 2020 Census now just over one year away, Borough President Melinda Katz announced today the first 70 appointees to her Queens Complete Count Committee.

“From federal funding to representation in the U.S. House of Representatives, so much is at stake with the 2020 Census. That’s why we need to be as prepared as possible to ensure every Queens resident is counted accurately, as an undercount would have negative impacts across our borough for at least the next decade,” said Borough President KATZ. “The challenges Queens faces are significant, but I am confident these civic-minded community partners will help ensure the borough is counted completely and fairly.”

First announced by Borough President Katz in her 2018 State of the Borough address, the Queens CCC will bring together trusted community leaders and activists to learn about key 2020 Census issues, report back to their diverse communities and strategize how to ensure everyone in Queens is counted accurately.

A second round of appointments to the Queens CCC will be conducted later this year.

The 2020 Census brings with it new challenges, including 80 percent of respondents being asked to complete the Census form online, making the Queens CCC’s work even more vital.

The federal government also announced last year its intention to add a citizenship question to the Census, which has raised concerns about the possibility of substantial undercounts in communities where residents fear being targeted over their immigration or residency status.

On January 15, U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman ruled the federal government’s attempt to add the question is unlawful. Borough President Katz applauded Judge Furman’s ruling in a statement issued that afternoon.

“The legal battle is likely far from over, and Queens will continue to speak out against the proposed Census citizenship question for as long as there is active litigation. But today’s court ruling is a tremendous victory in the fight against a reckless policy targeting our thriving immigrant communities in Queens and across the country,” Borough President Katz said. “Including a citizenship question would undermine the goal of the Census: a complete count of all persons living in the United States. Here in Queens, a borough of nearly 2.4 million people of all races, ethnicities and faiths, an undercount would lead to fewer federal dollars for countless vital programs and initiatives.

“Judge Jesse Furman’s ruling is consistent with the borough’s belief that everyone living in Queens deserves to be accurately and fairly counted,” Borough President Katz continued. “We are hopeful that any potential court decision in the future will cement this belief.”

The decennial Census determines the borough’s representation in the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as how much federal funding Queens receives for schools, infrastructure, health services and more.

The 2010 Census saw significant undercounts in parts of Western Queens, particularly those with high immigrant populations. As a whole, the count reported the population of Queens increased by only 1,300 people over the prior decade, and the Borough President is committed to working with government agencies, nonprofits and civic groups to prevent these inaccuracies from recurring.

As part of her determined effort to avoid an undercount, Borough President Katz hosted a Census Town Hall on November 13th, 2018 — featuring presentations from Deputy Mayor J. Phil Thompson, Department of City Planning Population Division Director Dr. Joseph Salvo, Census Bureau New York Regional Director Jeff T. Behler and others — to keep the public informed as the 2020 Census nears.

The 70 individuals appointed to the Queens Complete Count Committee — many of whom are also members of the Borough President’s Queens General Assembly and Immigration Task Force — are:

  • Sudha Acharya                             South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS)
  • Rokeya Akhter                              New American Women’s Forum of New York
  • Vincent Arcuri                               Community Board 5 – Queens
  • Anisia Ayon                                   Community Board 5 – Queens
  • Naheed Samadi Bahram              Women for Afghan Women
  • Lorna Blancaflor                           YMCA New Americans Initiative
  • Betty Braton                                  Community Board 10 – Queens
  • Carolyn Brown                              Community Board 8 – Queens
  • Josefa Castro                                Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens (CCBQ)
  • Rachel Cerbone                            Anti-Racism Committee at Safe Horizon
  • Chaio-chung Chen                        NYC Health+Hospitals/Elmhurst Hospital/Community Advisory Board
  • Narbada Chhetri                            Adhikaar for Human Rights and Social Justice
  • Rosemary Ciulla-Frisone              Community Board 10 – Queens
  • Veronica Coronel                           Latino Film Market
  • Pastor Phillip Craig                       Greater Springfield Community Church
  • Angie Damlakhi                             Allewaa Alarabi Newspaper
  • Herold Dasque                              Haitian Americans United for Progress, Inc. (HAUP)
  • Bess DeBetham                            Community Board 13 – Queens
  • Karen Durgana                              Central Library Advisory Board
  • Renetta English                             Community Board 3 – Queens
  • Crystal Feng                                  APA Voice
  • Kevin Forrestal                              Community Board 8 – Queens
  • Fred Gitner                                    New Americans Program, Queens Library
  • Lucia Gomez                                 New York Immigration Coalition Action Fund Board
  • Frank Gulluscio                             Community Board 6 – Queens
  • Adjoa Gzifa                                    Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated
  • Michael Hannibal                           Community Board 8 – Queens
  • Lourdes Villanueva Hartrick          Bellerose Commonwealth Civic Association
  • Larinda Hooks                               East Elmhurst Corona Civic Association
  • Shaikh Sirajul Islam                      Bangladesh Institute of Performing Arts (BIPA)
  • Mehreen Kagzi                              Safe Horizon
  • Bob Kaplan                                   Jewish Community Relations Council of New York (JCRC)
  • Lalit Khanna                                  Hindu Temple of North America
  • Jennie Kim                                     Legal Hand Jamaica
  • Nancy Konipol                               Community Board 1 – Queens
  • Eva Kornacka                                Polonians Organized to Minister to Our Community, Inc.
  • Julieta Larsen                               Queens Community House (QCH)
  • Mark Laster                                   Community Board 6 – Queens
  • Sharon Levy                                  YMCA of Greater New York
  • Shiuho Lin                                     Taiwanese American Association of New York
  • Richie Lipkowitz                            Indian Diaspora Council
  • Marcus Longmuir                          Jackson Heights Immigrant Solidarity Network
  • Angie Markham                             Italian Federation of Queens (FIAO)
  • Rosalinda Martinez                       Mensaje de Silo (Silo’s Message)
  • Antonio Meloni                              Community Board 1 – Queens
  • Jorge Mendizabal                          Guatemalan Community in Brooklyn and Queens
  • Sofiya Minsariya                            National Institute for Reproductive Health
  • Melva M. Miller                              Association for a Better New York (ABNY)
  • Abdus-Salaam Musa                    Southeast Queens Muslim Collective, Inc.
  • Nuala O’Doherty                           Jackson Heights Beautification Group (JHBG)
  • Theo Oshiro                                   Make the Road New York
  • Taina M. Pierce                             Friends of Queens Library – Lefrak City Chapter
  • Rasel Rahman                              Shetu, Inc.
  • Ashook Ramsaran                        Indian Diaspora Council International
  • Sherry Reisner                              Utopia Estates Civic Association
  • Quinn Rhi                                      MinKwon Center for Community Action
  • Louise Roach                                New Beginnings Church of Astoria
  • Gloria Rochester                          Jamaica NAACP
  • Tammy Ross                                 New Visions Democratic Club
  • Rabbi Hayim Schwartz                 Rabbincal Seminary of America
  • Lynette Shelborne-Barfield           Queens Chapter Rockaway YMCA
  • Patricia Simon                              United Neighborhood Settlement
  • Evgenia Soldatos                         Hellenic Lawyers Association
  • Roslin Spigner                              Queens Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta
  • Penny Stern                                 Community Board 8 – Queens
  • Perminder Thiara                         School District 26 PTA
  • Yanhai Wan                                  Forest Hills Asian Association
  • Jeffrey Wice                                 Rockefeller Institute of Government (SUNY)
  • Anna Xing                                    Charles B. Wang Community Health Center (CBWCHC)
  • Minwen Yang                               Community Board 4 – Queens


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