2020 Census

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Invitations to respond to the 2020 Census were delivered between March 12-20. Once you receive that invitation, you can respond online, by phone, or by mail.

Census results help determine how billions of dollars in federal funding flow into states and communities each year. The results determine how many seats in Congress each state gets. It is mandated by the U.S. Constitution in Article 1, Section 2: The U.S. has counted its population every 10 years since 1790.

When you respond to the census, your answers are kept anonymous. They are used only to produce statistics. The U.S. Census Bureau is bound by law to protect your answers and keep them strictly confidential. The law ensures that your private information is never published and that your answers cannot be used against you by any government agency or court.

This sample questionnaire will give you an understanding of the questions you will be required to answer. Or you can view an informational video put together by the U.S Census Bureau.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the decennial census?
Every ten years, the federal government does a count of the population of the United States.

What happens to my data? Is it safe to respond? 
By Census Law, Title 13 of the U.S. Code,  all responses to Census Bureau surveys and censuses are kept confidential and used for statistical purposes only. The Census Bureau publishes “aggregated statistics that do not reveal information about particular individuals, households or businesses.” Violations are a federal crime. In order to ensure data sets are useful and protect individual privacy, the Census Bureau will apply safeguards called “disclosure avoidance”, which include “differential privacy”.

Why is it important to respond to the census? 
First, it’s the law! Title 13 requires that persons respond to the census.
Second, the data collected by the Census Bureau is used to to distribute federal money, distribute congressional seats, redistricting at the federal and state level.

How do I complete the Census? 
Every household will have the option of responding online, by mail, or by phone.
Around March 12–20, 2020 households will receive an invitation to respond online to the 2020 Census. Most households will be invited to complete the 2020 Census online or over the phone. However, some households in areas that are less likely to respond online will receive a paper questionnaire along with their invitation. The invitation will also include information about how to respond online or by phone.

What information will not be requested? 
The Census Bureau will never ask for:

  • Social Security numbers.
  • Bank or credit card account numbers.
  • Money or donations.
  • Anything on behalf of a political party.

What languages will the Census be in?
Self response on the phone and online will be available in 13 languages. Mail self response will be available in Spanish and English.

For more information, please see the 2020 Census website.