Census Q&A: Ask Amy

Ask Jefferson Regional Foundation’s Civic Engagement PULSE Fellow, Amy Wisseman, your Census questions! 

How can I complete the 2020 Census?
Households can choose to complete their Census either online, over the phone, or on a paper form. 

 

When can I complete the Census?
Today! Households are able to respond to the 2020 Census now, and over 12 million households have already completed their Census forms. The US Census Bureau has sent households invitations to respond to the 2020 Census. If a household does not respond to the 2020 Census, a census taker will follow up in person to collect their response, so encourage community members to complete their Census forms online today!

 

What if I did not receive a Census mailing at my address?
You can still respond to the 2020 Census! If your household did not receive an invitation to respond to the 2020 Census you can still respond online, over the phone, or call and ask to receive a paper copy. If completing your Census online, click “Start Questionnaire”, then click “If you do not have a Census ID, click here” and continue to follow the instructions on the website. 

 

What questions are asked on the 2020 Census?
The Census asks for basic information about yourself and everyone who is or will be living with you on April 1, 2020. You will be asked to share who lives in the household; their name, sex, age, birthday, race/ethnicity, relationship to head-of-household; whether they own or rent their house; and a phone number. The Census will not ask about citizenship or immigration status. Click here to view the 2020 Census questionnaire.

The information you share is safe and secure. The US Census Bureau is not legally permitted to share your information with any other government agency or your landlord. 

 

What information will not be requested?
The Census will never ask for your:

  • Citizenship status.
  • Social Security number.
  • Bank or credit card account numbers or information. 
  • Money or donations.
  • Anything on behalf of a political party.

 

What does “hard-to-count” mean?
Hard-to-count populations are communities at a higher risk of being under-counted in the Census. If missed in the Census count, these communities are at risk of not receiving their fair share of funding for crucial resources or political representation for the next ten years.

The Census Bureau has identified the following populations as hard-to-count:
• Seniors
• People of Color
• Foreign-Born Residents
• Children (age 0-5)
• Students at Local Colleges and Universities
• Low-income Residents
• Rural Households

 

What languages will the Census be in?
The online questionnaire will be available in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), English, French, Haitian, Creole, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, and Vietnamese.

There are also language guides available in 60 languages to assist individuals with completing the Census. Community organizations can help assist foreign language speaking individuals in completing their Census forms.

 

What are Census Hubs?
The Allegheny County and City of Pittsburgh Complete Count Committee are reaching out to organizations and businesses to sign up as “Census Hubs”. Census Hubs must have Wi-Fi and technology available and public local hours to help individuals complete their Census questionnaire (Click here for more information on Census Hubs.) Jefferson Counts is planning to coordinate a local training for interested partners within the Jefferson Area. If your organization is interested in becoming a Census Hub, contact Amy Wisseman at amy.wisseman@jeffersonrf.org or call 412-267-6773.  

 

How does the Census Bureau count people living in homeless shelters and nursing homes?
The Census Bureau completes what they refer to as a “Group Quarters Enumeration” to count people living or staying in a group living arrangement. These places are owned or managed by an entity or organization providing housing and/or services for the residents. These services may include custodial or medical care as well as other types of assistance, and residency is commonly restricted to those receiving these services. Do not count anyone from the list below on April 1, 2020 – or they may be counted twice. 
Click here for a list of group quarters.

 

Have a question you’d like to have answered? Send it to Amy Wisseman at amy.wisseman@jeffersonrf.org or call 412-267-6773.