Census 2020

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what is the census?
The Census is required by the U.S. Constitution to be conducted every 10 years. The goal of the Census is to count the population of all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and 5 U.S. territories.

The Census is conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, a federal agency.

why is it important for Shelton to participate?
Census data is used to make a wide range of decisions about daily services, products, and support for Shelton.

Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding goes to hospitals, fire departments, schools, cities, roads, and more based on Census data. In 2016, Washington state received $16.6 billion through programs guided by 2010 Census data.

Census data is also used for federal redistricting, which determines how many Congressional seats each state has.

when and how can i complete the census?
Households will begin receiving Census mail the week of March 12-March 20. Mail will include information on responding to the Census online, by phone, or by mail. Every household will receive an invitation to participate in the Census by April 1 (Census Day).

From May-July, Census takers will visit homes who haven’t responded to the Census. Read more about how to identify a Census taker.

Exceptions: From March 30-April 1, Census takers will work to count people experiencing homelessness. In April, Census takers will visit students on college campuses, people living in senior centers, and others in group living arrangements (like correctional facilities, military barracks, etc.).

is the census available in different languages?
The Census questionnaire is available in Spanish as a print form, and on Census takers tablets when visiting households.

If responding online or by phone, 12 non-English languages will be available for respondents (including Spanish).

The U.S. Census Bureau will produce video and print guides in American Sign Language and 58 other non-English languages and a card for Census takers to use to identify household languages.

what types of questions are asked?
The Census will ask questions about individuals living or staying in your household on April 1, 2020. 
The Census also includes a question about homeownership, and will ask for your telephone number if there are any problems or questions about your Census form.

There will NOT be a citizenship question on the Census.

You can also view a sample 2020 Census form.

what types of questions will not be asked?
The Census will never ask you for:
  • Your Social Security number
  • Money or donations
  • Anything on behalf of a political party
  • Your bank or credit card account numbers
There will NOT be a citizenship question on the Census.

will my information be kept confidential?
Your information will absolutely be kept confidential—the Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the U.S. Code to do so.

The Census Bureau can’t reveal any identifiable information about you, your home, or your business, even to law enforcement agencies. Your answers can’t be used against you by any government agency or court.