The 2020 United States Census will begin counting every person living in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories in the beginning of April. This data is important in the determination of congressional representation, federal funding, and provide a snapshot of our nation. This count happens once a decade. The data generated from the US Census is used to make critical decisions when determining federal funding for more than 100 programs, including Medicaid, Head Start, block grants and the Supplemental Nutritrion Assistance Program (SNAP).
Timeline for the 2020 US Census:
- March 12 – 20: Households will begin receiving official Census Bureau mail with detailed information on how to respond to the 2020 Census online, by phone, or by mail.
- March 30 – April 1: The Census Bureau will count people who are experiencing homelessness over these three days. As part of this process, the Census Bureau counts people in shelters, at soup kitchens and mobile food vans, on the streets, and at non-sheltered, outdoor locations such as tent encampments.
- April 1: Census Day is observed nationwide. By this date, every home will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. Once the invitation arrives, you should respond for your home in one of three ways: online, by phone, or by mail. When you respond to the census, you’ll tell the Census Bureau where you live as of April 1, 2020.
- April: Census takers will begin visiting college students who live on campus, people living in senior centers, and others who live among large groups of people. Census takers also begin conducting quality check interviews to help ensure an accurate count.
- May – July: Census takers will begin visiting homes that haven’t responded to the 2020 Census to help make sure everyone is counted.