This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 13th (it will be out in January 2020), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Help Save Funding for Population Science

The budget proposal put out by the Trump administration cuts money from the Census, NIH, and NSF. It is obvious that this administration cares little about science, including that related to demographic issues. Indeed, it is likely that the whole point of a bare bones budget is to allow for a tax cut for the rich. But I digress. We all need to be in touch with our Member of Congress to make sure they understand the long-term harm to humans that will come from cutting back on collecting data in the census and cutting back on scientific research. The Population Association of America put out such a call today:
As you may know, on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, President Trump released his Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Request to Congress -- a document that includes deep, damaging cuts to a wide swath of scientific and statistical agencies that are vital to the work of population scientists. We are particularly concerned about:
National Institutes of Health: A $7.2 billion cut , or 21% reduction 
National Science Foundation: $551 million cut to research accounts (9% reduction) including a $28 million cut to the SBE Directorate
Census Bureau: Proposed an insufficient increase in funding (less than 4%) that is woefully inadequate to fund the critical End-to-End Readiness test in 2018 in preparation for the 2020 decennial census. This jeopardizes not only the accuracy of the 2020 Census, but potentially other core Census programs such as the American Community Survey (ACS), if the Bureau is forced to make unpalatable choices between annual surveys and the decennial census.
The President's Budget Request is only the first step in the federal budget process, and Congress has ultimate authority on appropriations. It is critical that Congress hears from constituents within the scientific community that a dramatic scaling back of the federal investment in scientific research and quality data collection threatens the economy as well as the productivity, health and well-being of the American people. Your voice is needed now, as the appropriations process gets underway, before spending decisions have been made. Read the statement from PAA President Amy Tsui and APC President Steve Ruggles concerning the Trump Budget Request.
This is really important. Contact your Member of Congress ASAP about this. 

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