HOW IT WORKS

The US Constitution requires that the federal government counts every person in the United States and its five territories every 10 years. Beginning March 12 by the US Census Bureau will send mail to each household with information on how to respond. One person in each household should complete the census for everyone in the household. The census questionnaire can be completed by anyone over the age of 15. If you do not complete and submit the form by the end of April, Census takers will come to your door to help count your household.

Here are a few other things to know about the census:

Everyone Counts

The census is a snapshot of all of us, no matter we are, where we are from, and what language we speak. Every person that lives in your household for most of the year should be counted in the census. This means adults, babies - even newborns still the hospital - teens, children, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends ( you get it).

It's Convenient

Once you receive your letter in the mail, you can complete the questionnaire. The questionnaire takes 10 minutes to complete for your household. The census can be completed online, by phone, and by mail.

It's Important

The census happens once every decade. Businesses and government agencies will use this data to make decisions that impact our daily lives such as where to build new schools, roads, centers as well as where to expand operations. The federal government will use census data to determine how billions will be allocated to cities and states. In addition, the census data is used to determine federal, state and local electoral districts. If Tennessee isn't fully counted, we will miss out representation, resources, and funding for the next 10 years!

It's Confidential

Under Title 13, information collected by the Census Bureau cannot release any identifiable information about you and your family not even to other agencies including law enforcement. This means that the Census Bureau is bound by law to keep your information private. Violators of this law could face jail time or hefty fines.

CENSUS TIMELINE

March 12, 2020

The census uses the US postal service to send a letter of invitation to respond. The online and phone portal to respond also open this day.

March 30, 31, April 1

"Service-Based Enumeration” begins to ensure that homeless populations are counted.

April 1, 2020 is Census Day!

Official Census Day! Ensuring that households fill out the census based on where they “usually” live on April 1. April 1st provides a reference point for where you are and usually reside. So if you move in May and fill out the form in June 2020, fill out the form where you were on April 1st.

APRIL 8 - 16, 2020

Paper forms will be sent out to households that have not yet responded.

APRIL 20 - 27, 2020

Final reminder postcard before the Census Bureau begins door knocking phase.

April 2020

Group Quarters Counted. Group quarters are housing units like nursing homes and colleges.

May 13, 2020

Door knocking phase. Everyone is still able to respond online, by paper and by phone during this phase or complete the form with the census worker at the door.

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