Learn with CLUES about the 2020 Census: how to respond and why it matters.
Your response matters.
Health clinics. Fire departments. Schools. Even roads and highways. The census can shape many different aspects of your community.
Census results help determine how billions of dollars in federal funding flow into states and communities each year.
Due to COVID-19, several scheduled in-person Census Workshops were cancelled. CLUES hosted a Facebook Live session on April 1 to answer questions and provide more info about the session. Watch the video here:
The census counts every person living in the United States. It must be filled out for all households, both U.S. citizens and non-citizens, including adults and children, as well as infants.
Your community benefits most when the census counts everyone. Census data guarantees funds for hospitals, schools, roads, fire stations and other educational programs, food assistance and more.
In 2020, you will be able to respond to the census online, by mail or by phone.
The distribution of more than $675 billion in federal funds, grants and support to states, counties and communities is based on census data.
Every 10 years, census results are used to conduct proportional redistribution of the House of Representatives, determining how many representatives each state receives.
The U.S. Constitution requires that every person in the country be counted every 10 years. It is considered a duty and their participation is required by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution.
We understand the concerns some people, especially undocumented folks, have about participating or opening their doors to unknown persons. It’s important to know that there are laws in place to protect your privacy. Individual level data is protected for 72 years—only the combined data of large areas is made public beginning the year after the census is completed. Census takers are required to clearly identify themselves and can only ask you official Census questions. Your responses cannot be used against you and can only be used to produce statistics. The Census Bureau is prohibited from using your responses in any way that could identify you or your household or sharing your information with another government agency, including ICE, the FBI, or the IRS.
As for the process in 2020, the United States Census Bureau will be sending letters to each household in March with an invitation to complete the census online using a unique code. Some households will receive the full census form as well. These forms contain nine questions that are very simple and easy to answer: name, age, race, ethnicity, how many people live in the home, how they are related to each other, and whether they own or rent the home. It is not mandatory to complete all the fields of the census form; for instance, if someone in the household is reluctant to share their name on the form, it is fine to write “Person 1” instead. Census forms can be answered by phone, online or through the mail.
Household responses must be received by April 1. After that, census representatives called enumerators will visit the home of anyone who has not responded. These visits will happen between the months of of June through October.