What is the 2020 Census?
The 2020 Census counts every person living in the 50 states, 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).
Census data is used for local planning and to make decisions about federal appropriations that communities rely upon for services and programs, including grants to states under the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). A complete and accurate count is critical for you and our community, because the results of the 2020 Census will affect community funding, congressional representation, and more.
Find more information on the 2020 Census at 2020census.gov.
2020 Census Timeline
Take a look at some of the key Census dates we will want to be aware of during this time:
March 12 – 20:
Households will begin receiving official Census Bureau mail with detailed information on how to respond to the 2020 Census online, by phone, or by mail.
March 30 – April 1:
The Census Bureau will count people who are experiencing homelessness over these three days. As part of this process, the Census Bureau counts people in shelters, at soup kitchens and mobile food vans, on the streets, and at non-sheltered, outdoor locations such as tent encampments.
Census Day is observed nationwide. By this date, every home will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. Once the invitation arrives, you should respond for your home in one of three ways: online, by phone, or by mail. When you respond to the census, you’ll tell the Census Bureau where you live as of April 1, 2020.
Census takers will begin visiting college students who live on campus, people living in senior centers, and others who live among large groups of people. Census takers also begin conducting quality check interviews to help ensure an accurate count.
April 8 – 16:
Reminder letters and paper questionnaires will be sent out.
April 20 – 27:
Final reminder postcards will be sent out before someone follows up in person.
May – July:
Census takers will begin visiting homes that haven’t responded to the 2020 Census to help make sure everyone is counted.
The Census Bureau will deliver apportionment counts to the President and Congress as required by law.
Why a Complete Count Matters
It’s in the Constitution
The US Constitution mandates that everyone in the country be counted every 10 years.
It’s about fair representation
Results are used for the reapportionment of the US House of Representatives, and for the redistricting of state and federal legislative districts.
It’s about $675 billion
Distribution of $675 billion of federal funds and grants for schools, hospitals, roads, and public works projects are based on US Census data.
Taking part is your civic duty
It is a (mandatory) way to participate in our democracy and say “I count”.
Census data is being used all around you
Residents, businesses, and local organizations use US Census data to make decisions and improve quality of life in Vermillion.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can we respond to the 2020 Census?
Online at my2020census.gov (Accessible by smartphone, tablet, or computer, this is the ONLY web address for completing the census online. The website is secure and responses are encrypted. The questionnaire will be available in 13 languages.)
Phone (Toll-free Census Bureau phone hotline in 13 languages.)
It will take about 10 minutes to complete the questionnaire. Guides will be available in 59 non-English languages.
What is new in the 2020 Census?
A household relationship question
There is NO citizenship question
How does the census affect funds for my community?
Help for our community gets its fair share for schools, health centers, roads, housing assistance, and other vital programs such as:
– National School Lunch Program
– Head Start
– IMLS state grants
Each person counted means an additional $1500 – $1600 going towards our community. During the last census in 2010, it’s estimated that our community was undercounted by about 25%. That means we’ve gone the last 10 years with less funding than we should have had.
Who is at risk of being undercounted?
People who are hard to interview: Participation is often hindered by language barriers, low literacy, or lack of internet access
People who are hard to locate: Housing units not on record and/or persons wanting to remain hidden
People who are hard to contact: Highly mobile, people experiencing homelessness, physical access barriers such as gated communities
People who are hard to persuade: Suspicious of the government, low levels of civic engagement