Alaska residents urged to complete census during downtime

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska official trying to promote participation in the national census has urged residents to file their forms online and by phone as the state falls behind the national response average.

    Alaska Public Media reported the push for remote filing comes as efforts by the U.S. Census Bureau to collect residency data have been hampered by the coronavirus pandemic.

    The national census response rate stands at nearly 43% but less than 27% of Alaska households have completed the census form.

    Gabe Layman of the Cook Inlet Housing Authority said many Alaskans don't know they can participate without a visit from a census taker.

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