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Tools for using the Advance Group Quarters Summary File

by Peter Wagner, May 17, 2011  

Last month, the Census Bureau released the Census Bureau’s Advance Group Quarters Summary File, which for the first time identified which census blocks contain group quarters, such as correctional facilities, early enough that state and local redistricting bodies can choose to use this data to draw fair districts.

The day after the release, we announced a series of tools designed to make this data easier for redistricting professionals and advocates to use. To recap, we’ve made:

  1. A point shapefile with the group quarters counts for each block in the country: http://www.prisonersofthecensus.org/data/2010/groupquartersshapefile.html The file contains the number of people in group quarters, and the number of people in different types of group quarters (including correctional facilities). Each blocks that contain a correctional facility includes a URL that links to our database of block annotations.
  2. A county-searchable database of census blocks that contain correctional facilities and our annotations. The data is viewable in tabular and Google maps formats at: http://www.prisonersofthecensus.org/locator2010

    For more advanced uses, including preliminary research for Count Question Resolution appeals and determining which blocks should be adjusted prior to redistricting, we’ve made available databases of state, federal, and local correctional facilities and their populations on dates as close to Census day as possible and as well as a memo about new large correctional facilities that were built over the last decade. These resources may be particularly helpful if a block that is of interest to you isn’t yet annotated in our database. These tools are at: http://www.prisonersofthecensus.org/data/

  3. Finally, we’ve written two introductions to the data and its uses:

We hope these tools help you draw fairer districts. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about these tools.

One Response

  1. Census Bureau’s Advance Group Quarters Summary File: Two years later | Prisoners of the Census says, 2 years after publication:

    […] Two years ago, working within a tight timeframe, the Census Bureau released a new data product that made huge progress towards helping state and local governments avoid prison gerrymandering: the Advance Group Quarters Summary File. […]

Meet us

  • December 22, 2014:
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  • February 20, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner, Board Member Amanda Alexander and Advisory Board Member Bruce Reilly will present on a panel entitled “The fight against mass incarceration: Combining litigation and policy work for systemic change” at RebLaw at Yale Law School from 3-4:30pm.

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Events

  • December 22, 2014:
    Peter Wagner will be on Bill Newman’s show on WHMP at 9:18am to talk about the fight for prison phone justice in Western Mass and nationwide.
  • February 20, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner, Board Member Amanda Alexander and Advisory Board Member Bruce Reilly will present on a panel entitled “The fight against mass incarceration: Combining litigation and policy work for systemic change” at RebLaw at Yale Law School from 3-4:30pm.

Not near you?
Invite us to your city, college or organization.

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