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There are three ways to respond to the census: online or by phone or by mail. Households will receive an invitation in the mail with instructions for completing the questionnaire.
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Every 10 years, the federal government conducts a population count of everyone in the United States. Data from the census provide the basis for distributing more than $675 billion in federal funds annually to communities across the country to support vital programs—impacting housing, education, transportation, employment, health care, and public policy. They also are used to redraw the boundaries of congressional and state legislative districts and accurately determine the number of congressional seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The next census will take place in 2020. Beginning in midMarch, people will receive a notice in the mail to complete the 2020 Census. Once you receive it, you can respond online. In May, the U.S. Census Bureau will begin following up in person with households that haven’t responded to the census.
In 2020, for the first time ever, the U.S. Census Bureau will accept responses online, but you can still respond by phone or mail if you prefer. Responding should take less time than it takes to finish your morning coffee.
The decennial census will collect basic information about the people living in your household. When completing the census, you should count everyone who is living in your household on April 1, 2020. Click here to look at a sample census questionnaire.
Yes. By law, every person living in the U.S. and its territories is required to respond to the census.
The response deadline is June 30, 2020. However, census workers will begin following up in person with households that have not responded by April 30, 2020.
Census workers will follow up with a home visit to households that do not respond.
The U.S. Census Bureau encourages each household to complete their questionnaire in its entirety. To ensure your questionnaire counts toward the population of your community, the response to the question regarding the number of people in the home, must be completed.
Your answers are only used for statistical purposes. This information helps the government make informed housing and planning decisions, and fund important programs in areas of education, transportation, healthcare and so much more.
Yes, the census offers the online and paper questionnaire in 12 non-English languages: Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Japanese.
Additional materials and assistance are available in 59 languages. Visit 2020census.gov for more information