What is the 2020 Census?
As mandated by the U.S. Constitution, our nation gets just one chance each decade to count its population. The U.S. Census counts every resident in the United States. It is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution and takes place every 10 years.
"The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct" - The Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 2
The data collected by the census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives (a process called apportionment) and is also used to distribute billions in federal funds to local communities.
The next census in 2020 will require counting an increasingly diverse and growing population of around 330 million people in more than 140 million housing units. To get an accurate count, the Census Bureau must build an accurate address list of every housing unit, maximize self-response to the census, and efficiently follow up with those who do not respond.
In the years leading up to 2020, we conducted research in four areas that focus on the major cost drivers of the census:
- Using the Internet to increase self-response.
- Using existing government data sources to answer census questions and reduce follow-up workload.
- Automating operations to increase productivity and reduce staff and offices.
- Using existing maps and address to reflect changes rather than walking every block in every neighborhood in the country.
The decennial census is the largest mobilization and operation conducted in the United States and requires years of research, planning, and development of methods and infrastructure to ensure an accurate and complete count.
Why we do a Census
The framers of the Constitution of the United States chose population to be the basis for sharing political power, not wealth or land.
A census aims to count the entire population of a country, and at the location where each person usually lives. The census asks questions of people in homes and group living situations, including how many people live or stay in each home, and the sex, age and race of each person. The goal is to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place.
“Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers…” - The Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 2.
How the Census Benefits Your Community
Federal funds, grants and support to states, counties and communities are based on population totals and breakdowns by sex, age, race and other factors. Your community benefits the most when the census counts everyone. When you respond to the census, you help your community gets its fair share of the more than $675 billion per year in federal funds spent on schools, hospitals, roads, public works and other vital programs.
Businesses use census data to decide where to build factories, offices and stores, and this creates jobs. Developers use the census to build new homes and revitalize old neighborhoods. Local governments use the census for public safety and emergency preparedness. Residents use the census to support community initiatives involving legislation, quality-of-life and consumer advocacy.
How to Get Involved
The 2020 Census provides an opportunity for everyone to be counted. Tribal, state, and local governments; community-based organizations; faith-based groups; schools; businesses; the media; and others play a key role in developing partners to educate and motivate residents to participate in the 2020 Census.
When community members are informed, they are more likely to respond to the census. Through collaborative partnerships, the U.S. Census Bureau and community leaders can reach the shared goal of counting EVERYONE in 2020.
The Complete Count Committees (CCC) program is key to creating awareness in communities all across the country.
- CCCs utilize local knowledge, influence, and resources to educate communities and promote the census through locally based, targeted outreach efforts.
- CCCs provide a vehicle for coordinating and nurturing cooperative efforts between tribal, state, and local governments; communities; and the Census Bureau.
- CCCs help the Census Bureau get a complete count in 2020 through partnerships with local governments and community organizations.
Who can be in a Complete Count Committee?
Tribal, state, and local governments work together with partners to form CCCs to promote and encourage response to the 2020 Census in their communities. Community-based organizations also establish CCCs that reach out to their constituents.
What is a Complete Count Committee?
A CCC is comprised of a broad spectrum of government and community leaders from education, business, healthcare, and other community organizations. These trusted voices develop and implement a 2020 Census awareness campaign based upon their knowledge of the local community to encourage a response.
When is a Complete Count Committee Formed?
The formation of CCCs is happening NOW! Leaders are identifying budget resources and establishing local work plans. In 2020, they will implement the plans and lead their communities to a successful census count.
How is a Complete Count Committee Formed?
It’s up to all of us! CCCs know the best way to reach the community and raise awareness. Some activities could include:
Why is a Complete Count Committee Formed?
- Holding CCC kickoff meetings with media briefings.
- Participating in Census rallies or parades.
- Coordinating Census unity youth forums.
- Hosting Interfaith breakfasts and weekend events.
- Encouraging the use of Statistics in Schools classroom resources.
- Incorporating census information in newsletters, social media posts, podcasts, mailings, and websites.
- Helping recruit census workers when jobs become available.
The primary goal of the 2020 Census is to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place. Community influencers create localized messaging that resonates with the population in their area. They are trusted voices and are best suited to mobilize community resources in an efficient manner.
2020 Census Timeline
- Tribal leader, governor, or highest elected local official or community leader determines Complete Count Committees (CCCs) structure.
- CCCs receive 2020 Census training.
- Continue establishing CCCs.
- Open Area Census Offices.
- CCCs develop strategy and work plan.
- CCCs begin community organization mobilization.
- 2020 Census advertising campaign begins in early 2020.
- CCCs support the 2020 Census.
- CCCs encourage self-response.
April 1, 2020 – CENSUS DAY
- CCCs urge households who do not respond to cooperate with census takers.
2020 Census Complete Count Committee Guide
State Count Commissions Brochure
Complete Count Committee Pamphlet
For additional information about the Complete Count Committees program, please contact;
Brian J. Meinhart