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October 4, 2019

 

 
 

The 2020 Census will use a powerful new privacy protection system known as “differential privacy,” designed specifically for the digital age. The Census Bureau is transitioning to this new, state-of-the-art privacy protection system to keep pace with emerging threats in today’s digital world. The U.S. Census Bureau’s differential privacy methods will be designed to preserve the utility of the legally mandated data products while also ensuring that every respondents’ personal information is fully protected. Differential privacy is the gold standard for privacy protection in computer science and cryptography, designed to preserve confidentiality in the 2020 Census and beyond. Differential privacy was developed by researchers at Microsoft and is now used by many leading tech firms. 

 

 
 

Cars are expensive to own, maintain, and insure. They take a heavy toll on the environment. And not having a car can say something about a person’s identity. But being able to go without a car isn’t just a matter of personal commitment—it depends a lot on where you live. Some cities are denser, have much better transit, and are more walkable and bike-able than others. CITYLAB developed a Metro Car-Free Index based on four key variables: the share of households that don’t have access to their own vehicle, the share of commuters who take transit to work, the share of commuters who bike to work, and the share of commuters who walk to work. Data are from the American Community Survey’s five-year estimates for 2017, and they cover all 382 U.S. metropolitan areas. The map charts the broad pattern across all U.S. metros. Note the wine- and rust-colored metros where people are most able to go car-free. The two largest car-free clusters are those stretching down the Northeast’s Acela corridor, from Boston to Washington, D.C., and the Pacific Northwest, from Seattle to Portland. By contrast, much of the Deep South is highlighted in light orange or pink, signifying much higher car dependency.

 

 
 

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Heart Association this week publicly got on the same page about what young children should be drinking. They unanimously concur that little ones should avoid sugary drinks, diet drinks and other beverages that have little to no nutritional value. Instead, they should drink breast milk, infant formula, water and plain milk, the groups recommend. Young children between 12 and 24 months should drink water or whole white milk (unless reduced fat milk is needed, due to family history of obesity or heart disease), and only a half cup or less of 100 percent juice per day. The consensus advice comes as the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee is reviewing nutrition science to update the federal guidelines for 2020. In response to the recommendations, the American Beverage Association said its member companies "agree that it's important for families to moderate sugar consumption to ensure a balanced, healthy lifestyle, and this is especially true for young children. We have always believed in putting fact-based information in the hands of parents, so they can choose what's best for their families."

 

 
 

The U.S. Census Bureau released population breakdowns in Illinois last month, reflecting decreases in 86 of the state’s 102 counties. Due to this decline, Illinois could lose up to two seats in Congress. In addition to the loss of population and representation, a potential undercount threatens billions of dollars in federal funding for everyday government expenditures, such as highways, education, and more. University of Illinois Extension will welcome experts on their Local Government Education (LGE) webinar series to explain how and why local governments and advocacy groups should help ensure an accurate count. On Thursday, October 17 at Noon CST, LGE will host a webinar entitled Counting For Dollars: Census 2020, presented by Carrie L. Davis, Democracy Program Director of the Joyce Foundation, Anita Banjeri from Forefront’s Democracy Initiative, and Elissa Johnson from the U.S. Regional Census Bureau. Each expert will give an overview of their respective programs and speak to how important the roles of local governments are in ensuring an accurate count for the upcoming decennial census. For more information, and registration, click HERE.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

October 9-10 (Springfield, IL) - Illinois Regional Collaboration Summit

October 17 (LGE Webinar) - Counting for Dollars: Census 2020

October 24-25 (Dubuque, IA) - Growing Sustainable Communities Conference