The 2020 Census is here, and is key to improving quality of life for everyone. If you haven't heard about the census or don't know a lot about it, that's okay.
In this blog, we're going to walk you through everything you need to know about the 2020 Census. If you're interested in more information about the census, you can check out our extensive resource page here.
What is the census?
The census counts every living person in the United States and territories.
Why is it important?
The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community.
The census determines:
- Hundreds of billions in federal funds for public education, healthcare, affordable housing, infrastructure and more.
- The number of seats New York has in Congress.
- How we make important decisions on local policy, emergency services, transportation, healthcare, and more, based on accurate data.
What does it ask?
- How many people are living or staying at your home
- Their sex, age, race, and ethnicity
- Whether your home is owned or rented
- Your home address
The census does NOT ask about immigration or citizenship status, income, or your social security number.
Is it safe?
Yes! All responses are confidential, protected by law, and cannot be used against you in any way. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share any personal information with other government agencies, including law enforcement. Penalties for breaking this law includes up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
When does it start?
The census starts March 12, 2020. For the first time, you will be able to complete the census online, by mail or over the phone, in multiple languages. Check your mailbox from the Census Bureau on how to fill out the form. Every NYC public library branch and many trusted community-based organizations will also provide assistance in filling out the form.