What is the Census?

What is the Census?

Every 10 years, the United States counts everyone who lives in the country, regardless of age, nationality, or ability.  Almost every government program you can think of is budgeted based on the census, as is our representation in Congress. It is important for everyone to respond to the 2020 Census so that communities like yours can receive the funding they need for health care, accessibility services, and more.

More information on the Census...

How Will the 2020 Census Be Conducted?

Every household will have the option of responding online, by mail, or by phone. Nearly every household will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census from either a postal worker or a census worker in March 2020. 

The 2020 Census hopes to be the first to collect its response mostly online. While mail-in forms will still be sent out, the Bureau expects over 50% of the population to take a few minutes to fill out the census online. For those who do not submit a census form, enumerators will still be sent out into the community to count.

Wondering what to expect by mail, and how to respond? See this fact sheet.

How Can I Respond to the Census?

Beginning in mid-March 2020, you can respond to the census by answering a handful of questions online, by phone, or by mail.  

The online questionnaire is accessible to people with a wide range of disabilities. If you prefer to respond by mail. but do not receive a questionnaire in your first mailing from the U.S. Census Bureau, you can wait for the fourth mailing, in mid-April 2020, which will include a questionnaire.

  • If you have blindness or low vision, you can print a guide to the questionnaire in braille or large print from 2020CENSUS.GOV.
  • If you have deafness or a hearing loss, you can:
    • Respond to the census using telephone devices for hearing impaired. 
    • Access video guides to the questionnaire in American Sign Language on 2020CENSUS.GOV.
    • View online videos and webcasts with closed or open captioning.
    • Request a visit from a census taker who uses American Sign Language.

More information on options for responding to the Census is available here.