Once a decade, everyone living in the United States is counted. The count is mandated by the Constitution and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, a nonpartisan government agency. By April 1, 2020, every home will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. Once the invitation arrives, responses for each household can be made in one of three ways: online, by phone, or by mail.
What is the Census and why is it important?
The Census provides important data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for communities across the country, including the Village of Western Springs. Every year billions of dollars in federal funding for hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources, are based on census data.
The results of the Census also determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives, and are used to draw congressional and state legislative districts. The 2020 Census will mark the 24th time that the country has counted its population since 1790.
What is new for Census 2020?
The 2020 Census is the first time that in addition to a paper survey, the Census Bureau will offer online and phone response options. All households will continue to have the option to participate by using a paper form. When the census process begins in March, approximately 80% of addresses will receive an invitation letter with instructions on how to respond online or by phone using an identification number. The remaining 20% of households will receive both an invitation letter and a paper questionnaire with postage-paid return envelope. After three mailed requests to complete the census online or by phone, households will receive a paper questionnaire in the fourth mailing.
March 12 - 20
An invitation to respond to the 2020 Census will be sent to households. Some households will be asked to reply online. Others will receive paper questionnaires.
March 16 - 24
A reminder letter will be send to households.
March 26 - April 3
A reminder post card will be mailed to households that have not responded.
April 8 - 16
A reminder letter and follow-up paper questionnaire will be mailed to households that have not responded.
April 20 - 27
A final reminder postcard will be mailed to households that have not responded.
May 13 - July 31
Census Takers will conduct in person follow-ups with households that have not responded.
The U.S. Census Bureau is committed to keeping all responses confidential. The Census Bureau is required by law to protect any personal information collected and keep it strictly confidential. The Census Bureau can only use responses to produce statistics. The Census Bureau takes strong precautions to keep online responses secure. All data submitted online are encrypted to protect personal privacy. Please visit the Census Bureau’s website for more information on confidentiality (LINK).
Identifying a Census Taker
Please visit the Census Bureau’s website to access information on how to identify Census Takers (LINK).
The U.S. Census Bureau is recruiting to fill hundreds of thousands of temporary positions across the country to assist with the 2020 Census count. Please visit the Census Bureau’s website for information on how to apply to be a Census Taker (LINK).