April 1—Census Day—marks the date of the last known address the United States Census Bureau uses to include you in its headcount of the U.S. population every ten years. It's also the perfect time to remind you to fill out the 2020 Census form, if you haven't already, because you really, really need to.
The census determines the distribution of billions in federal funding to the states each year, and also the number of seats each state gets in Congress. It also decides how Congressional districts are drawn—something which can be done very creatively to favor one political party over the other during an election year. To put it another way, if you and enough of your neighbors don’t complete the census, you’ll literally count less in terms of the power you’ll have in this country.
Considering the census is crucial to a functioning democracy, the Founding Fathers wrote it into the Constitution, with the first undertaken in 1790 under President Thomas Jefferson, and then decennially after that. And like everything else right now, the 2020 Census is being affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The Census Bureau has pushed back its deadline for completing the count from the end of July to mid-August, while also delaying the hiring of the 500,000 temporary census-takers needed to do in-person counts of college students, the homeless and nursing-home residents.
However, for the other 95% of households who should have received their census forms by now, you can return your finished questionnaire by mail, or call in to a toll-free number (1-844-330-2020) to complete it over the phone. And this year, for the first time, you can go online at my2020census.gov and fill out the form there. It's simple, it’s fast and there's a lot riding on it—so complete your form asap.Share the story