Between March 12 and March 20, 2020, the majority of households will receive a postcard invitation to respond online to the 2020 census. This is the first time response can be completed online, projected to save $5.2 billion. The 2010 census cost $10.2 billion. Those who do not answer will receive the traditional paper form in the mail. If a household still does not respond, the U.S. Census Bureau will send a census taker to knock on that door to collect the household’s data
The count is mandated by the Constitution and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, a nonpartisan government agency. The 2020 Census counts the population in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands). It’s also in the Constitution: Article 1, Section 2, mandates that the country conduct a count of its population once every 10 years. The 2020 Census will mark the 24th time that the country has counted its population since 1790.
The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community. Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources based on census data. The results also determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives, and they are used to draw congressional and state legislative districts.
Participating in the census is required by law, even if you recently completed another survey from the Census Bureau. A complete and accurate count is critical for you and your community, because the results of the 2020 Census will affect community funding, congressional representation, and more. The number of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and the electoral college votes that each state gets are determined by census numbers. The political balance of power in America changes after each census.
If you are visited by someone from the Census Bureau, here are some ways to verify the individual is a Census Bureau employee: the field representative will present an ID badge that includes their name, photograph, a Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date. The representative will carry an official bag with the Census Bureau logo or a laptop for conducting the survey and they will provide you with a letter from the Census Bureau on official letterhead stating why they are visiting your residence. Field representatives conduct their work between the hours of 9 a.m. and 9.pm., local time. Upon request, the representative will provide you with their supervisor’s contact information and/or the phone number for your Census Bureau Regional Office. The Regional Office supervises the activities of all field representatives in your area.
Rural communities need to participate to be counted eligible for important Federal funds for home loans, business loans and waste disposal. You and your neighbors have the right to be counted.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau