GET OUT THE COUNT!

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COUNTDOWN TO COMPLETE THE CENSUS

The Census is happening now! All Californians can now complete the 2020 Census onlineby phone or by mail. A Census ID is not required for households to respond online or by phone. 

Beginning in August, Census enumerators will be out in the field. Census workers will be knocking on doors to follow up with households that have not yet responded to the Census and are there to help. To learn more on how to identify a Census worker, click here

Every Californian can now respond to the Census online at https://my2020census.gov and by phone by calling the numbers available here. Complete your Census TODAY!

About the 2020 Census

  • Every 10 years, people across the country and in California fill out the Census in order to have an accurate count of all people in the United States. The Census determines California’s federal funding for important community services that help support our families and fair share of representation in California and Washington D.C.
  • The Census is a 9 question survey that helps determine dollars that fund important programs for the next ten years.
  • There is no citizenship question on the 2020 Census.

Safe and Confidential

  • The 2020 Census is an opportunity for every Californian to shape our future. Your Census responses are safe and secure. Information collected as part of the 2020 Census cannot be shared with or by other governmental agencies or used against you in any way.
  • The U.S. Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the United States Code. These laws not only provide the Bureau with authority for its work, but also stipulate strong protections for the information the Census collects from individuals and businesses.

Money and Power

  • The 2020 Census will decide how billions of federal dollars are distributed in California. An undercount could impact funding for our schools, health services, child care, emergency services and many other programs.
  • The 2020 Census will decide the number of California’s Congressional members and Electoral College votes. A complete count means more people in power who truly represent and advocate for our communities.

How to Complete the Census

Online: For the first time, the Census form will be available to complete online in 13 languages. Visit my2020census.gov to complete your Census today!

By Phone: The Census can be completed by phone in 13 languages including Telecommunication Device for the Deaf. Call 844-330-2020 today to complete your Census in English. To see the list of in-language phone numbers, click here.  

The U.S. Census Bureau is offering a callback option. If you choose the callback option, simply provide your preferred phone number and time of day for a return call. An official Census representative will call you back to collect your response to the 2020 Census.

By Mail: The paper Census form will be available in English and Spanish languages and can be mailed back to the U.S. Census Bureau. Census workers have started to physically drop off the Census questionnaire to some communities that don’t use a city-style addresses such as those with P.O. boxes. Complete and return your Census!

Census FAQs
California is committed to a complete and accurate count that is inclusive of everyone, regardless of immigration or citizenship status. California has invested more resources than any other state to ensure our outreach and education efforts are robust and effective. California is committed to working with partners to monitor federal efforts, dispel fear and misinformation, and ensure all Californians understand their protections under Title 13.

What is California doing to work toward a complete and accurate count in the 2020 Census?

California is committed to a complete and accurate count, inclusive of our immigrant populations. California has invested more resources than any other state to ensure our outreach and education efforts are robust and effective. California is committed to working with partners to monitor the federal effort, dispel fear and misinformation, and ensure Californians understand their protections under Title 13.

Why is it important for everyone to be counted in the Census?

The United States counts all persons in the country once a decade in a Census in order to:

  • Fairly allocate federal resources across the country, to help ensure public safety and plan new schools and hospitals
  • To apportion political representation in the California State Legislature and the U.S. House of Representatives

    For example:
    • Some federal funds, grants, and support to states, counties and communities are based on population.
    • It is critical for everyone to be counted, regardless of immigration status. When you respond to the Census, you help your community get its fair share of federal funds.
    • Businesses use Census data to decide where to build factories, offices and stores, and this creates jobs.
    • Developers use Census data to build new homes and revitalize neighborhoods.
    • Local governments use Census data for public safety and emergency preparedness.

How do you get counted?

You can fill out your Census TODAY online, by phone or by mail. 

You have until September 30, 2020 to complete your Census. 

Timelines are Subject to Change. See the adjusted timeline here:  USCB Adjusted Operational Timeline

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What should Californians be aware of when filling out the Census?

  • It is critical to be cautious of any requests that seem suspicious.
  • The U.S. Census Bureau will never ask for the following:
    • Payment to fill out the questionnaire
    • Social Security number
    • Financial information
  • U.S. Census Bureau field staff will always show a valid Census Bureau ID. You can confirm that they are a U.S. Census Bureau employee by entering their name into the Census Bureau Staff Search or by contacting the California Regional Office.
  • It is a federal crime to impersonate a federal official, and anyone who violates this law is subject to imprisonment.

Is private information protected?

  • The United States Census Bureau (USCB) is required by law to protect any personal information it collects and keep it confidential.
  • The U.S. Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the United States Code. These laws not only provide the Bureau with authority for its work, but also stipulate strong protections for the information the Census collects from individuals and businesses.
  • The U.S. Census Bureau uses responses to produce statistics.
  • Private information may not be published when it is collected. After 72 years, it may be published for historical purposes by the National Archives. It is against the law to disclose or publish any private information that identifies an individual or business, such as names, addresses (including GPS coordinates), Social Security numbers, and telephone numbers.
  • Answers cannot be used for law enforcement purposes or to determine personal eligibility for government benefits.
  • Personal information cannot be used against respondents for the purposes of immigration enforcement.
  • U.S. Census Bureau employees are sworn to protect confidentiality. Every person with access to data is sworn for life to protect personal information and understands that the penalties for violating this law are applicable for a lifetime.
  • Violating confidentiality or sharing the information other than for statistical purposes is a serious federal crime. Anyone who violates this law will face severe penalties, including a federal prison sentence of up to five years, a fine of up to $250,000, or both.

Will the 2020 Census include a question about citizenship?

The 2020 Census questionnaire will NOT include a question about an individual’s citizenship status. Everyone, regardless of their immigration status, has certain basic rights. For those who have concerns about opening your doors, there are other ways you can participate. You can participate from the comfort of your home online and over the phone, or at community run assistance center. Please complete your Census questionnaire. An incomplete questionnaire may increase your chances of nonresponse follow-up by the U.S. Census Bureau. The Census is happening now. Your participation is vital, and your information is protected.

What is the California Census Office doing to encourage participation?

  • California’s Census Office is supporting a robust, coordinated outreach and communication effort focused on reaching the hard-to-count (HTC) population.
  • The Census Office is collaborating with counties, local governments, tribal governments, regional and statewide community-based organizations, education, and other sectors to ensure the hardest-to-count Californians are reached.
  • Communication efforts will aim to help Californians understand that their information will remain private and dispel misinformation.
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Who must respond to the Census?

Everyone must respond to the Census. Regardless of immigration or citizenship status, all Californians have certain basic rights, and the U.S. Constitution mandates a complete count of all persons residing in the United States. It is crucial that all Californians are counted to ensure a fair distribution of resources.

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Who do you include on the Census form?

When filling out the Census for your household, you should count everyone who is living in your home on April 1, 2020. Everyone is counted at the location they are either living at or spend most of their time on April 1, 2020.

It is important to remember to count any children who are living with you. This includes:

  • All children who live in your home, including foster children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and the children of friends (even if they are living with you temporarily).
  • Children who split their time between homes, if they are living with you on April 1, 2020.
  • Newborn babies, even those who are born on April 1, 2020, or who are still in the hospital on this date.
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What questions will be asked on the Census form?

The 2020 Census will ask:

  • How many people are living at your home on April 1, 2020: This will help the U.S. Census Bureau count the entire U.S. population and ensure that people are counted according to where they live on Census Day. The U.S. Census Bureau will ask the name of each person in the household.
  • Whether the home is owned or rented: This will help the U.S. Census Bureau produce statistics about homeownership and renting. The rates of homeownership serve as one indicator of the nation’s economy and help in administering housing programs and informing planning decisions.
  • About the sex of each person in your home: This allows the U.S. Census Bureau to create statistics, which can be used in planning and funding government programs. This information can also be used to enforce laws, regulations, and policies against discrimination.
  • About the age of each person in your home: The U.S. Census Bureau creates statistics to better understand the size and characteristics of different age groups. This information helps to plan and fund government programs that support specific age groups, including children, youth and older adults.
  • About the race of each person in your home: This allows the U.S. Census Bureau to create statistics about race and racial groups. This data helps federal agencies monitor compliance with anti-discrimination provisions, such as those in the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act.
  • About whether a person in your home is of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin: These responses help create statistics about this ethnic group. This is needed by federal agencies to monitor compliance with anti-discrimination provisions, such as those in the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act.
  • About the relationship of each person in your home: This allows the Census Bureau to create estimates about families, households, and other groups. Relationship data is used in planning and funding government programs that support families, including people raising children alone.

NOTE: The citizenship question is NOT included on the Census form.

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How do you complete the Census questionnaire?

Every person in the country is required to fill out the 2020 Census form. Luckily, you have three ways to respond.

Online: For the first time, the Census form will be available to complete online in 13 languages. Visit my2020census.gov to complete your Census today!

By Phone: The Census can be completed by phone in 13 languages including Telecommunication Device for the Deaf. Call 844-330-2020 today to complete your Census in English. To see the list of in-language phone numbers, click here.  

The U.S. Census Bureau is offering a callback option. If you choose the callback option, simply provide your preferred phone number and time of day for a return call. An official Census representative will call you back to collect your response to the 2020 Census.

By Mail: The paper Census form will be available in English and Spanish languages and can be mailed back to the U.S. Census Bureau. Census workers have started to physically drop off the Census questionnaire to some communities that don’t use a city-style addresses such as those with P.O. boxes. Complete and return your Census!

Video and printed guides will also be available in 59 non-English languages, and there will be a video in American Sign Language, plus a printed guide in braille.

Whichever you use, just make sure you fill out the form!

How do you identify a U.S. Census Bureau worker?

U.S. Census Bureau field staff will always show a valid Census Bureau ID, which includes their photograph, a U.S. Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date. The U.S. Census Bureau will never ask for the following:

  • Payment to fill out the questionnaire
  • Social Security number
  • Financial information, such as bank account or credit card numbers

You can confirm they are a U.S. Census Bureau employee by entering their name into the Census Bureau Staff Search or by contacting the California Regional Office at 213-314-6500 or toll–free at 800-923-8282. In addition, you can search the Census Bureau Staff Directory to find the contact information for employees to verify their identity – https://www.census.gov/cgi-bin/main/email.cgi

It is a federal crime to impersonate a federal official, and anyone who violates this law is subject to imprisonment.

How do you avoid Census-related frauds and scams?

Avoiding Scams Online
Phishing is a criminal act in which someone tries to get your information by pretending to be an entity you trust. Phishing emails often direct you to a website that looks real but is fake and may be infected with malware.

Please note that the Census Bureau will never send unsolicited emails to request your participation in the 2020 Census. Further, the Census Bureau will never ask for the following information during the 2020 Census:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • Financial information, such as your bank account or credit card numbers
  • Money or donations

Additionally, the Census Bureau will not contact you on behalf of a political party.

Reporting Suspected Fraud
If you suspect fraud, call the U.S. Census Bureau California Regional Office at 213-314-6500 or toll–free at 800-923-8282 to speak with a local Census Bureau representative. If it is determined that the visitor who came to your door does not work for the Census Bureau, contact your local police department.

When do you fill out the Census form?

Today! Complete your Census online, by phone or by mail. 

You have until September 30, 2020 to complete your Census.

Timelines are Subject to Change. See the adjusted timeline here:  USCB Adjusted Operational Timeline