Stewart Bell Jr. Archives
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The census is a count of every person who lives in the United States and its territories. It happens every 10 years. It's not too late to respond but you need to act quickly! Data collection for self-reporting and nonresponse followup will end September 30th. In early 2020, you were asked to count everyone who lived in your home as of April 1. Responding to the 2020 Census is a chance to shape your future. It even helps secure funding for your local public library! For the first time, you can complete the census online, by phone, or by mail.
Because of COVID-19, it's more important than ever to respond to the census by self-reporting. Households that don't report will receive a visit from a census taker in their community. Census takers will be wearing masks and adhering to all social distancing and public health guidelines. All the same, the fewer rounds they have to make the better. Here's how in-person census taking will work in 2020.
Now that the library is open again, public terminals are available on a limited basis if you still need to complete the census online. You can call the information desk at any branch on the day you wish to make a 45 minute reservation. Please call early as spaces are limited.
You can complete the census online or by phone in 13 different languages: English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Japanese.
To help you respond, the Census Bureau also offers webpages and guides in 59 non-English languages, including American Sign Language, as well as guides in Braille and large print. Visit Language Support to learn more.
When can I respond to the census?
In early 2020, every household in America received a notice to complete the census online, by phone, or by mail. In the fall, the U.S. Census Bureau will begin following up in person with households that have yet to respond.
Is my information safe?
Your responses to the 2020 Census are safe, secure, and protected by federal law. Your answers can only be used to produce statistics. They cannot be used against you by any government agency or court in any way—not by the FBI, not by the CIA, not by the DHS, and not by ICE.
What will I be asked?
You will be asked a few simple questions, like age, sex, and the number of people who live in your home, including children.
What won’t be asked?
The census will never ask for Social Security numbers, bank or credit card numbers, money or donations, or anything related to political parties.
What's in it for me?
Your Invitation to Respond
Homes began receiving their invitation to respond to the 2020 Census in March. These official Census Bureau mailings included detailed information and a Census ID for completing the Census online.
During this time frame, some homes received a paper questionnaire (sometimes known as the census form). It's not too late to complete your form online, by phone, or by mail.
One person should respond for each home. That person must be at least 15 years old. They should live in the home or place of residence themselves and know general information about each person living there.
How to Respond
You can complete the census online, by phone, or by mail. Find out more about each of these methods below:
Please note that if you are responding online, you must complete the census in one sitting, as you don't have the ability to save your progress.
If you do not receive an invitation to respond from the Census Bureau, you may respond online or visit the Phone Response Guide to call it in.