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Groups: Census privacy tool could hurt voting rights goals

Photo: Dan Dennis
Photo: Dan Dennis

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A report from two civil rights groups says a method being used for the first time by the U.S. Census Bureau to protect people’s privacy in 2020 census data could make voting rights enforcement more difficult.

The report says the method known as “differential privacy” also could make it harder to ensure congressional and legislative districts have equal populations.

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Asian Americans Advancing Justice say their findings reinforce concerns about the deliberate introduction of erroneous numbers to thwart data miners.

They say it could hamper redistricting and fail to comply with the Voting Rights Act.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.