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San Francisco kicks off the 2020 Census with LGBTQ communities

Illustration of diverse LGBTQ people in front of a blue and pink background
San Francisco’s Office of Transgender Initiatives, Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs, and community partners kickoff the 2020 Census with a panel conversation to discuss what’s at stake for LGBTQ communities.

Trans, gender nonconforming (TGNC) and LGBQ communities have been underserved for too long, and the 2020 Census gives us an opportunity to address that. Every ten years our federal government conducts the Census, a count of every person residing in the United States. This data is used to allocate funds for life-saving community programs such as Medicaid, public housing, and food stamps. It is also used to create legislative districts, allocate congressional seats, and electoral votes in the presidential election. When TGNC and LGBQ communities in San Francisco are undercounted, our communities lose out on critical federal dollars and government representation.

The Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA) is spearheading SF Counts, the local campaign to ensure that all San Franciscans are represented in the Census. “Our LGBTQ community is vital to the fabric of our City.” said Adrienne Pon, Executive Director, OCEIA and SF Counts. “We are honored to partner with the Office of Transgender Initiatives (OTI) and an amazing network of community, labor, arts and faith based partners to bring the 2020 Census to the people, especially those who belong to hard-to-reach communities. Every person matters and has the right to participate, regardless of age, immigration status, income, sexuality, gender identity or expression.”

Tonight’s panel conversation, The 2020 Census and the LGBTQ Community with the Michelle Meow Show at the Commonwealth Club, will discuss how the 2020 Census impacts our communities, how we will be counted in the survey, and how we can participate. This is especially critical in light of the fact that the Census does not explicitly collect data on sexual orientation and gender identity.

“By participating in the Census we ensure that we are fairly represented in federal spending and government. The 2020 Census is our opportunity to claim and build our power as a community,” said Clair Farley, Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Transgender Initiatives.

“While our LGBTQ identities are not being captured due to our current Federal Administration, we still have the power to be counted and no one can take this away from us. We can make change by completing the Census and voting in 2020,” said Clair Farley, Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Transgender Initiatives. “By participating in the Census we ensure that we are fairly represented in federal spending and government. The 2020 Census is our opportunity to claim and build our power as a community,” said Clair Farley, Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Transgender Initiatives.

The 2020 Census and the LGBTQ Community, is a panel conversation hosted by Michelle Meow that kicks off the Census’ LGBTQ-related initiatives with OCEIA, OTI, and the SF LGBT Center at the Commonwealth Club.

Panel speakers include:

  • Clair Farley, Senior Advisor to the Mayor and Director of the Office of Transgender Initiatives, San Francisco
  • Honey Mahogany, Activist; Drag Queen; Co-founder, Compton's Transgender Cultural District; Member, San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee; Co-owner, Stud Bar, Legislative Aide to Supervisor Matt Haney (District 6)
  • Rafael Mandelman, Supervisor (District 8), San Francisco; Former Deputy City Attorney, Oakland; Former Trustee, City College of San Francisco
  • Jessy Ruiz, Immigrant Rights Commissioner
  • José "Jojo" Ty, Youth Commissioner (District 8); Certified Community Health Worker

The event is tonight, Friday, January 31, starting at 6:30 pm.
The Commonwealth Club is located at 110, The Embarcadero.
Register through the Commonwealth Club website, and use the promocode “meowaccess” for free entrance.