Census address issues confuse some, anger others in Moss Point - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Census address issues confuse some, anger others in Moss Point


By Patrice Clark – bio | email

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) -  Now that Census forms are hitting South Mississippi mailboxes, there are questions about whether the information on them is accurate. Several Moss Point residents say their forms list Pascagoula as their mailing address, not Moss Point. 

Jennifer Anderson was stunned when she pulled her Census envelope out of her Moss Point mailbox and noticed a Pascagoula address in bold letters. 

"I am very upset," Anderson said. 

The 2010 Census, which is taken every  ten years, impacts representation in Congress, and federal funding to cities and schools.  Anderson worries that listing the wrong city will be costly to her hometown.  

"I do live in Moss Point and I want to be counted in the right city where I pay my taxes." 

Former state lawmaker Mitch Ellerby is also upset about the address error.

"The Census Bureau has been given millions of dollars to get it right," Ellerby said. 

As part of the Moss Point area "Be Counted" Community Group, Ellerby helps educate citizens on the Census.  He said there's always been a problem with accuracy in minority communities. 

"We have been under counted," Ellerby said. "We were looking around 18,900 some people; we dropped down to 16,000, now we are down to 13,000. That is red flag." 

WLOX contacted the Census Bureau about the address questions. Spokesman Bill Bowen said,"This does not mean that those residents will be counted in the city listed in the mailing address on the envelope. The census questionnaire contains a bar code that ensures that census respondents are counted at the physical location where they received their form." 

But that answer still worries some. Now they're calling, emailing and knocking on doors to tell their neighbors to please fill out the forms, so the city can get all its resources and representation needed for the coming years. 

"Everyone wants to make sure Moss Point will be counted, and if we don't speak up, who will speak up for us?" Ellerby asked. 

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