Wednesday, December 30, 2009

American Community Survey Contrast Charts

We've just uploaded over a thousand documents with tables and charts from the 2008 American Community Survey (ACS) released this fall by the Census Bureau. The charts reveal socio-economic disparities experienced by African-Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans vis-a-vis non-Hispanic whites.

Click through these directories to download PDF files by nation, state, and selected counties and places (updated February 2012).

The national and state documents are from the 2008 one-year survey and the county documents are based on the 2006-2008 three-year survey.

We've included all counties with estimated populations of at least 20,000 persons, of whom 10,000 or more are African-American or Latino. ACS estimates for counties with fewer than 20,000 persons will not be available until the fall of 2010.

We use charts similar to these for testimony in Section 2 voting rights cases (redistricting). But the charts may also prove useful for local and state advocacy.

The documents are up to 60 pages in length -- but may be smaller depending on sample size and data suppression issues. We've included most of the key variables broken out by race or ethnicity in the American Community Survey. Persons familiar with the the SF 3 long form sample data from the 2000 census will notice differences in the data presented. For example, median home value, median rent, access to a vehicle, and telephone service are not available by race in the 2008 ACS.

The FairData website has several thousand contrast chart documents for most places in the country with significant minority populations, based on the 2000 census.

Thanks to M-SLICE  in St. Louis,  MO for suggesting these contrast chart updates.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Potential New Majority-Black Congressional District in South Carolina

According to the latest population estimates from the Census Bureau, South Carolina is set to gain a new congressional seat in 2011. This means that a new majority African-American congressional district is in the cards.

The map below shows one possible configuration -- without getting into messy little details such as where incumbents live. The map is based on 2006 census tract population estimates (the latest we have available).

District 6 (yellow) has a 56% overall African-American population (about the same as the current District 6) and District 7 (light orange) is 53% African-American. We're cutting it close on the minority voting age percentage in District 7, but the district can be fine-tuned and probably strengthened when precinct-level data is released following the 2010 census

District 6 encompasses predominantly African American neighborhoods in Charleston and surrounding rural areas. The new upstate District 7 would combine parts of Columbia with the Greenville-Spartanburg area.

View Larger Map

There is no guarantee that South Carolina will get a new congressional seat when the actual count for the 2010 census is released. As explained in this post by the Swing State Project, it will all boil down to a few thousand persons. Community census advocates can use our Hard-to-Count Mapper or our Google Map overlays to help focus outreach efforts.