What is the 2020 Census?
The 2020 Census counts everyone in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five US territories (Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands). Everyone in these areas is required by law to be counted in the census. The census is mandated by the Constitution and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, a nonpartisan government agency. The census has conducted every ten years since 1790.
Why is the 2020 Census important?
Data collected from the census is used in a variety of important ways. It determines how many seats each state has in the House of Representatives. It's used to draw congressional and state legislative districts. The data is also used to help determine how how hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding are allocated to more than 100 programs including; Medicaid, Head Start, block grants for community mental health services, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Locally, this funding affects things like highway planning, public transit systems like buses and trains, school lunch programs, housing assistance for older adults, and much more. Data from the census is also used by community leaders to make decisions about things like building community centers, opening businesses, and planning for the future.
What questions does the 2020 Census ask?
The census will never ask for; your social security number, money or donations, anything on behalf of a political party, your bank or credit card numbers. There is no citizenship question on the 2020 Census.
Is the 2020 Census Secure?
The Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the U.S. Code to keep your information confidential. Under Title 13, the Census Bureau cannot release any identifiable information about you, your home, or your business, even to law enforcement agencies. The law ensures that your private data is protected and that your answers cannot be used against you by any government agency or court. The answers you provide are used only to produce statistics. You are kept anonymous: The Census Bureau is not permitted to publicly release your responses in any way that could identify you or anyone else in your home.
How do I respond to the 2020 Census?
By April 1, 2020, every home will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. There are three ways to respond. For the first time, everyone will now be allowed to respond the census online. It's also possible to respond to the census by mail or over the phone. For more information about this topic, check out https://2020census.gov/en/ways-to-respond.html.
The Library and the 2020 Census
The North Wales Area Library will be having dedicated Census Days in March and April where individuals can get additional help with responding to the census. These days will be:
Thursdays, 5pm to 9pm, from March 19 to April 30
Saturdays, 10am to 2pm, from March 21 to April 25
The Library will also be performing outreach throughout the community to help people respond to the census. We will be at:
Assi (Welsh Road), 10am to 12pm, on Saturday, March 21
Washstop Laundry, 9:30am to 3:30pm, on Sunday, March 22
Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church (Lansdale), 11am to 2pm, on Tuesday, March 24
Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church (Lansdale), 4pm to 6pm, on Wednesday, March 25
Manna on Main Street, 8am to 6pm, on Wednesday, March 25
North Penn High School, 10am to 6pm, on Saturday, March 18