What’s the Scoop on the 2020 Census?

Do you want the roads in your county to be improved? Would you like to see more federal funding put toward your local schools, fire departments and hospitals? One way you can make this happen in your community is by completing your 2020 Census.  

Every ten years, the Census Bureau counts every person living in the United States and its territories by sending out invitations via mail to each household. By providing your response, you’re providing critical information that is used to determine how funding and representation gets divided up throughout the nation. 

202 Census Rural Communities

The results of the census directly determine the number of seats each state will have in the House of Representatives as well as the way in which the congressional districts are drawn up. 2019 estimates showed that Pennsylvania is one of ten states that is expected to lose a seat in congress following the census, making it even more crucial for every Pennsylvanian to be counted this year. 

The results of the census also determine how federal funding is allocated throughout the nation. Hundreds of billions of dollars get put forth each year toward local health care, emergency response, schools, infrastructure, economic development, housing services and much more. The results of the census directly impact where and how this money gets distributed. 

There are three ways to complete your census: 

  • Online: You can respond online with any smart device by heading to https://my2020census.gov and providing your Census ID. For more information about responding online, click here.  
  • By Phone: The 2020 census can be completed by phone in an assortment of languages. To find your number and respond by phone, click here.  
  • By Mail: You should have received your first invitation to respond in the mail back in March, and then the official questionnaire should have come in mid-April. To learn more about submitting your census via mail, click here.  
2020 Census Fact Sheet

If you still haven’t filled out your census, you can expect to be visited or contacted by a census taker soon, as data collection will end on September 30, 2020. Learn more about door-to-door census visits here.  

In case you’re still unsure, filling out your census is a safe and secure process. Your answers are only used to produce statistics and are kept anonymous. In fact, the Census Bureau is bound by law to keep your answers confidential. The Bureau will also never ask you for your social security number, credit card numbers or donations.  

Right now, the nation’s self-response rate for the census is less than 65 percent, and Pennsylvania’s response rate is at 67.3 percent. While that may seem like a lot, more than 30 percent of the commonwealth is still unaccounted for. Imagine only receiving 67.3 percent of the paycheck you deserve? So, if you haven’t done so already, head over to the Census website to respond, and help Pennsylvania be counted! 

George Stark

George grew up in Western PA, graduated from Dickinson College and has been involved in Public Policy matters since then. He has worked in Harrisburg and Pittsburgh on energy issues with a focus on Local, State and Federal matters. As the Director, External Affairs at Cabot Oil & Gas Corp, George directs the media, community and legislative relations for the company.

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