Results from the Nation’s first census should be ready for presentation in about six months.
Self Governance and Strategic Planning analyst, Susan Bayro, gave an update to the 8th ON Congress on Day 7 of the Tzi-Sho Session. She said the Nation’s first census received more than 4,500 responses, something they were pleasantly surprised with.
“When we first released the census, the response on the first day was 1,800 people,” she said.
Bayro said according to their U.S. Census representative, the Osage Nation is the first tribal nation to perform its own census on its membership. They are also working to gain official recognition with the U.S. Census Bureau.
The 2023 census launch comes after the Seventh ON Congress unanimously passed ONCA 22-30 (sponsored by now-Congressional Speaker Alice Goodfox) in April 2022 establishing that the Nation “shall conduct a census once every five years starting in 2023, which shall be administered through the Executive Branch.”
Congressman Joe Tillman said 4,500 responses is roughly 20 percent of the Osage membership. He asked if that response was on par with the amount of answers received by the U.S. Census.
Bayro said yes and that since the Nation’s census was so successful, the U.S. Census Bureau has asked the Osage Nation to participate in a project that aims to encourage more Native Americans to participate.
The first-day success of the census may partly be due to the incentive of a $100 gift card to the first 1,500 people to fill out the census. She said after further research, they actually have enough funding to give 1,800 people a $100 gift card. The paperwork for the gift cards is currently being processed in the Nation’s Treasury and they should be mailed soon, she said.
Congresswoman Jodie Revard asked about the timeline of the report and Bayro said the software used for the survey produced over 700 pages. They also optioned to allow people to write in their answers. The data captured will take at least six months to review and analyze for their three-person staff, then design into a comprehensive and easy-to-read report.