Library Blog

The 2020 Census: Why It’s Important


Reasons Why It’s Important for Everyone to Take the Census:

  • Constitutionally-required count of every person in USA. 
  • Determines representation in Congress and Electoral College. 
  • Determines allocation of $800 billion each year.  Including how much police, hospitals, schools and public libraries receive. 
  • Occurs only once every 10 years.  So if you aren’t counted, and funds aren’t allocated properly, you will need to wait another decade. 

How to fill out the census: 

  • All households will receive an invitation letter with unique User ID (but without an ID, you can still register using your address). 
  • Respond online, by phone, or with paper questionnaires. 
  • Guides for completing census available in 60 languages, (including ASL and Braille). 
  • Online questionnaire available in 13 languages. 
  • Only takes 10 minutes to complete. 

Things to be aware of: 

  • Census Bureau will not email/text, ask for bank or credit card accounts, require Social Security #’s, or take payments. 
  • Counts every person in USA, regardless of immigration status or citizenship. 
  • Confidentiality of personally identifiable information (including citizenship status) is protected. 
  • New questions this year, such as including same-sex relationships. 

Some people that may be difficult to count: 

  • Homeless. 
  • Those located in remote/rural areas. 
  • Transitory groups (campgrounds, migrant farms, couch-surfing). 
  • Group facilities (dorm, military base, prison, nursing home). 
  • Communities displaced/recovering from natural disasters. 
  • Young children (ages 0-5), esp. minorities. 
  • Complex households (blended families, etc.). 
  • Cultural and linguistic minorities, non-fluent in English. 
  • Undocumented immigrants. 
  • No High School diploma. 
  • Low income. 
  • No internet access. 
  • Disabled. 

The Census is important!  It’s completely confidential, so please make sure that you are counted and represented. 

Learn more about why Census records are important for family history and genealogy records: 

For more information on the Census, visit the 2020 Census website at: 

You can also take the Census online at: 


“To date, 93 million households, nearly 63 percent of all households in the Nation, have responded to the 2020 Census.”

(Statement from U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham: Delivering a Complete and Accurate 2020 Census Count. Retrieved 8/3/2020 from 


Kelly is a librarian at the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County. As the Adult Programming Specialist, her focus is bringing adults the library programs they love.  (Kids can’t have ALL the fun!).  She reads strictly nonfiction and picture books.  She believes that anything you could ever need or want is located somewhere in the library.  Including friends.