As New Bedford census workers reach out to neighborhoods in the City with high concentrations of unreturned census forms, local Domino’s pizzerias have stepped up with a tasty treat for families who need help completing or returning the forms before the census closes at month’s end.
This week, Domino’s donated 200 gift certificates to the “Everyone Counts in New Bedford” campaign, to incentivize census holdouts to meet with local census workers and file their forms. And the gift certificates donated weren’t just for ordinary pizzas, since the census drive coincided with Domino’s national roll-out of two new premium specialty pizzas, the Chicken Taco pizza, and the Cheeseburger pizza.
“The timing of the 2020 census during our new pizza rollout gave us the opportunity to do something really special for the City,” said Nelson Hockert-Lotz, who owns the Domino’s franchises at 821 Rockdale Avenue and 109 Rockdale Avenue in the City. “Now there are more pizza choices for everyone, including those who are craving a taco or cheeseburger. They won’t be disappointed!”
Local Domino’s owners said the importance of a “complete count” census for supporting City services made donating more than $2,000 worth of pizza to the census campaign a good fit for giving back to the community at a time when the City budget is stretched by the costs of the pandemic response.
“Supporting the 2020 census is just another way of honoring our first responders, city workers and teachers, by helping them get the funds they need to do their jobs,” said franchisee Tony Squizzero, who owns the Domino’s at 836 Ashley Boulevard.
The local census count is used to establish baselines for state and federal support for City services, including police, fire, road repair, schools and teachers.
“Since the census only comes around once every ten years, it will be another decade before we have this opportunity again,” Squizzero said. “Let’s make the most of it. It only takes a few minutes, but it will affect the health, education, and quality of life of our residents for years to come. Every response matters, so be counted, and help us get a complete and accurate count.”
City residents who have not yet submitted their census forms, or are having difficulty doing so, should go to New Bedford Counts, 2020 Census on Facebook to find a complete list of local census outreach events. At these events census workers will assist in filing the forms and will be distributing the Domino’s Chicken Taco and Cheeseburger pizza gift certificates, said Lynn Coish, Complete Count Coordinator for New Bedford.
The census is completely confidential, Coish said. The results are not shared with any other federal agency or private entity. The census asks no questions about your immigration status or citizenship.
Census forms may also be submitted at my2020census.gov or by calling 1-844-330-2020. Additional New Bedford census information and assistance is provided by New Bedford Public Libraries at (508) 991-6275.