Respond to the 2020 Census Today
Denver, CO – It has never been easier to respond to the 2020 Census on your own, whether online, over the phone or by mail – all without having to meet a census taker. Self-responding online, by phone, or by mail will minimize the need for the U.S. Census Bureau to send census takers out into the community to knock on doors.
We encourage all Coloradans to respond as soon as they receive their invitation using a desktop computer, laptop, smartphone, or tablet. They can also respond by phone or mail. We encourage Coloradans to let their friends, families, and social networks know about the importance of responding. Let’s make sure that all Coloradans are counted once, only once, and in the right place.
Less than one week ago, the 2020 Census fully kicked off, and invitations continue to arrive in mailboxes across Colorado and the nation. As of today, more than 11 million households have responded. America is stepping up to shape our future and ensure families and communities are counted.
Beginning today, in support of guidance on what we can all do to help slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), 2020 Census field operations will be suspended for two weeks – until April 1, 2020. The Census Bureau is taking this step to help protect the health and safety of the public, Census Bureau employees, and everyone going through the hiring process for temporary census taker positions.
During this pause in field operations, the Census Bureau will continue to evaluate all 2020 Census operations. Should any additional adjustments need to be made, the Census Bureau will communicate these changes broadly and promptly. The U.S. Census Bureau is carefully monitoring the COVID-19 situation. We are working with national, state, and local health authorities as we continue conducting the 2020 Census.
In late May, census takers around the nation will begin visiting households that have not yet responded to the 2020 Census to help complete the count. As we continue to monitor the evolving COVID-19 situation, we will adjust census taker and survey operations as necessary in order to follow the guidance of federal, state, and local health authorities. We are focused on protecting the health and safety of our staff and the public and fulfilling our constitutional duty to deliver the 2020 Census counts on schedule.
Counting College Students
The U.S. Census Bureau adjusted operations for the 2020 Census to make sure college students are counted. We recently offered college student housing administrators multiple options for counting students. In light of the COVID-19 situation, we are now contacting these administrators to ask them if they would like to update their preference to an option that requires less contact with students.
In general, students in colleges temporarily closed due to COVID-19 will still be counted as part of this process. Even if students are home on census day, April 1, they should be counted according to the residence criteria (where they live and sleep most of the time).
Counting Group Quarters
The U.S. Census Bureau is working with administrators at nursing homes, college dorms, prisons and other institutional living facilities to ensure their residents are counted. We are encouraging administrators to choose a way to count their residents that requires less in-person contact, such as eResponse or providing a paper listing.
Counting Homeless Populations
The U.S. Census Bureau is working with service providers at emergency and transitional shelters and soup kitchens to adapt plans to count the populations they serve.
The plan has been to interview each person served a meal or staying at the facility at a date and time the service providers choose between March 30 and April 1. We are now contacting the service providers to determine whether they will be open between March 30 and April 1 and whether they should be able to provide a listing of census response data for each person served or staying at the facility instead.
ABOUT THE 2020 CENSUS
- The 2020 Census is a short questionnaire that asks about who lives in your household. One person should respond for an entire household.
- The 2020 Census requires counting a diverse and growing population in the United States and the five U.S. territories.
- In March 2020, most households will receive an initial invitation in the mail to participate in the 2020 Census.
- Some households in areas with low internet access should receive a paper form on the initial mailing, but those who have not responded online or by phone will receive a paper questionnaire in April that can be returned by mail.
- Self-response options:
- After a series of reminder mailings, if the household has not self-responded, the Census Bureau plans to send census takers door-to-door to collect responses in May.
- Households Using P.O. Boxes or with Low (or No) internet Connectivity:
- The U.S. Census Bureau currently has plans to drop off census packets (with an invitation and paper questionnaire) in April. Bureau employees will leave the packets at the door, without knocking or ringing doorbells.
- This operation was set to begin in March, but is now postponed until April 1, 2020.
- The 2020 Census is important because it will determine congressional representation, inform hundreds of billions in federal funding, and provide data that will impact communities for the next decade.
- Responding to the 2020 Census is safe and secure. Individual responses are confidential and protected by law.
- The Census Bureau is committed to making the 2020 Census quick, easy, and safe.