This year the US Census has been overshadowed by the coronavirus outbreak, but that doesn’t make it any less important. In fact, completing the Census is something important that you can do from home to help make sure your community is represented and your voice is heard over the next 10 years.
First, the census is what determines congressional representation, meaning how many people will represent your state and community Washington, DC. The more voices, the more diversity, the more power to make sure your community’s needs are met. This is critical as the population changes over time, so as people move from one area to another, representation follows that movement.
The Census also ensures that your community receives their fair share of federal funding, which is distributed based on population and demographics. If the Census data isn’t accurate, these fund distributions won’t be accurate, and your state and community will have to do with less funding. These funds are used to provide government services, everything from roads to education, and since many of the dollars are to support our most vulnerable populations, it is critical to make sure your state receives every dollar possible, and that can only happy with an accurate Census count.
Finally, the Census gives us an accurate picture of the makeup of our communities, information used at the local, state and federal levels to create good policy for 10 years. Data collected counts the population, the income of the community, the diversity, ages and genders. Without this information the government is only guessing about who lives in a community and how large. Accurate counts of children help to determine needs and locations for new schools, grants for new community centers or services for seniors, just to name a few.
Complete your 2020 Census:
- Visit https://my2020census.gov/ with the letter you received in the mail with you Census ID. If you don’t have the letter, you can still complete your census; it just might take a little longer to verify your address.
- Make sure you include every member of your household, even children so that child wellness and education dollars are correctly distributed to your community
- Your data is completely confidential – it won’t be released for 70 years
- Complete the Census, even if you’re undocumented. By law individual Census data cannot be shared with law enforcement or any other government agency.
The US Census is an integral component required for our government to function, and for the first time ever it can be completed online, no stamps required. It takes less than five minutes to complete and will amplify your voice. Completing the Census isn’t just your civic duty, it’s the law, and it’s a quick and easy way to continue to support the topics you’re passionate about by ensuring your community has representation, funding and accurate information for future decisions.