What is the Census and why should I care?
As mandated by the U.S. Constitution, America gets just one chance each decade to count its population. The U.S. Census Bureau counts every resident in the United States. The Census is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution and takes place every 10 years. Not only do we have to count people, but we also have to know where they live so we can provide accurate population numbers for counties, states, municipalities, and other jurisdictions. These numbers are used to draw school and voting districts.
By April 1, 2020, every home will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. Once the invitation arrives, you should respond in one of three ways: online, by phone, or by mail. The Census Bureau completes the count and delivers the counts to the President and Congress by December 2020.
Census data, collected every 10 years, determines your representation in Congress and determines how funds are spent in your community on items like roads, schools, and hospitals. Everyone living in the United States, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands is required by law to be counted in the 2020 Census.
How do I participate?
The 2020 Census will use a new design that incorporates online and phone response options in addition to the traditional paper option. The online response option allows people to respond to their desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, or tablets.
Here’s how the census helps you and your community:
- Communities use the information to plan bus routes, draw school district boundaries, and offer community services.
- Businesses use census data to decide where to put a store, office, or plant. These new locations create jobs and support the community’s economy.
- Businesses use the information to determine what to sell in their stores so communities get what they need.
- The information helps your community receive funding from the federal government.
You can help with the Census: Earn extra income while helping your community:
- The U.S. Census Bureau is recruiting thousands of people across the country to assist with the 2020 Census count. Visit the Census website to apply.
How do I find out more information?
For more information, visit Census.