The Census, Ten Facts We Bet You Didn't Know
It is that time again. Time for what? It is time to be counted!
As a part of the US Constitution: Article 1, Section 2, it is mandated that the country conducts a count of its population once every ten years. The 2020 Census will mark the twenty-fourth time that the country has counted its population since 1790.
Many of us know that fun fact about the US Census, however, there is a lot of information floating around that you might not know. Let’s take a few moments and focus on ten facts. Make sure you read all the way to number ten, it is the MOST important.
1. In January 2020 the U.S. Census Bureau officially started their counting with the population in the rural Alaskan village of Toksook Bay. From March 12th - 20th, 2020: 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. Watch for yours then. Find out more about this fun fact at https://2020census.gov/en/what-is-2020-census.html.
2. March 30, 2020 - April 1, 2020: The Census Bureau will count people who are experiencing homelessness over these three days. As part of this process, the Census Bureau will count people in shelters, soup kitchens, mobile food vans, on the streets, and at non-sheltered, outdoor locations such as tent encampments. It is very important to have as many people counted as possible, Find out more about this fact visithttps://2020census.gov/en/partners/outreach-materials.html
3. April 1, 2020: is National Census Day. By this date, every home will have received an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. Once the invitation arrives, you can respond 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. Visit the Census website listed in fact number one to receive more information about this.
4. All through April 2020 Census takers will begin visiting and counting college students who live on campus, people living in senior centers, and others who live among large groups of people. The Census identifies these individuals as residing in group quarters and asks that you NOT include them in your in-home count. However, if you have a child who attends boarding school below the college level they SHOULD be counted at the home of their parents or guardians. Census takers will also conduct quality check interviews to help ensure an accurate count. Visit https://2020census.gov/en/who-to-count.html for more information about counting residents living in group quarters.
5. The results of the 2020 Census will inform decisions about allocating hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding to communities across the country—for hospitals, fire departments, school lunch programs, and other critical programs and services. The 2020 Census will be valuable to businesses, as the results will provide a rich set of data on the communities they serve, including population trends and growth projections. Business owners rely on census results to make decisions, such as where to open new stores, restaurants, factories, or offices, where to expand operations, where to recruit employees, and which products and services to offer. It is ever important to be counted for these reasons alone. For more information about federal funding visit hs://2020census.gov/en/partners/outreach-materials.html
6. The results of the 2020 Census will be used to adjust and possibly redraw electoral districts, based on where populations have increased or decreased. State legislatures or independent bipartisan commissions are responsible for redrawing congressional districts. The U.S. Census Bureau provides states with population counts for this purpose. Visit the website, in fact, number five for more information on the importance of being counted and redistricting.
7. The 2020 Census is hiring and it is your chance to play a part in history. Hundreds even thousands of positions offer the perfect opportunity to earn extra money while helping your community. Most 2020 Census positions will last several weeks. The jobs will offer competitive wages, weekly paychecks, flexible hours and paid training. According to the Census website, the average wage being offered in Cuyahoga County will be $20.50 - $22.50. Visit https://2020census.gov/en/jobs/job-details.html for more information about specific jobs and to learn how to apply.
8. The city of Euclid has a trained city employee to assist residents with any Census questions they might have. Daniel Petrelli the city of Euclid’s Community Development Manager attended training through the Census Bureau and is prepared to assist residents any way he can. “I am here to listen to resident’s ideas about the Census, answer Census questions, and stop any myths or rumors that are circulating about the Census” share Petrelli. Residents can contact Petrelli via email at DPetrelli@cityofeuclid.comor by phone at 216-289-8140. Residents can also access the Census Website through a link on the city of Euclid website at http://www.cityofeuclid.com/.
9. The Census Bureau will attend community meetings and engagements (schedule permitting) to talk further with community and religious groups. Dispelling rumors and sharing facts. If you are having a meeting and are interested in having an employee from the Census Bureau come and talk to your group contact Daniel Petrelli at the City of Euclid at 216-289-8140.
10. You made it to number 10! The most important fact of all. 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. Visit https://2020census.gov/en/data-protection.html for more information about how the Census PROTECTS your information.
Hopefully, you enjoyed these ten Census facts. To learn more about all things the Census, visit the official Census website, the Euclid Public Library (where staff can assist you with questions or concerns,) or contact Daniell Petrelli with the City of Euclid. We hope everyone will take a few moments this year to make history and BE COUNTED.
A Peninsula, Ohio, native, Emily Holody is a stay-at-home mother and freelance writer with a degree in Sociology from Kent State University. She has a background in mental health and social work, loves yoga, all things outdoors, and lives in Euclid with her childhood sweetheart and their family.