Why the 2020 census matters to your family

This brand story was created by culling over a dozen pages of press release material from the Census Bureau.

Every Michigan resident is urged to participate in the 2020 Census to help ensure federal and state dollars and programs can be administered fairly, and planning can done properly.

According to state officials, the census is a huge opportunity for Michigan since the state has likely grown in population since the 2010 Census.

“Why is an effective, accurate census so important?” said Michigan Census 2020 Executive Director Kerry Ebersole Singh. “Because census numbers impact everyone in our state. They affect every family, every individual and every child. They affect businesses and local communities.”

She added, “Our census count determines funding for public safety, including police and fire, health care, education and infrastructure, and impacts other essential services. Our census count shapes our congressional representation, impacts legislative districts, and much, much more.”

However, officials say, many challenges and much misinformation about the census persist which could hamper participation—especially in rural and urban communities, which have been traditionally under-counted in the census.

It is vital everyone living in Michigan on April 1, 2020, or anyone who spends at least 50 percent of their time in Michigan, be counted as living in Michigan on the 2020 Census.

To help with that effort, the Michigan Census has launched the statewide “Count Me In” campaign, which communicates the importance of completing the census, dispels myths, and maximizes participation in the census.

The Facts
• Responding to the census is convenient so people can respond by mail, phone or online.
• The census is 100 percent confidential and secure and your information will not be shared with anyone.
• Officials want to make sure everyone is counted because it’s critical to the future success of Michigan.

The Numbers
In 2016, MI received nearly $30 billion in federal funding, including:
• $1.1 billion for highway planning and construction
• $17 billion for health programs
• $5 billion education
• $2.3 billion for food assistance
• $694.3 million for housing

Other Effects
The census count is also used to shape congressional representation and much, much more.
Michigan currently has 14 representatives in the U.S. House but stands the chance of losing one seat if the population declines.
If that happens, the state’s congressional districts would have to be redrawn, which would also lead to a reduction in the number of electoral votes Michigan has in presidential elections.

How it works
Beginning in March, the U.S. Census Bureau will send each household a postcard inviting residents to respond to the census online, by phone or by mail.
The census questionnaire will ask for the names, sex, age, date of birth, race, and ethnicity of each person living at the residence, whether you rent or own your home, and for a phone number in case they need to follow up. Only one person should complete the census for the entire household.

What is the timeline?
The process begins in mid-March and ends July 31.

Anyone who doesn’t respond to the March invitation will receive reminders in the mail until early May.

Census staff will then go door to door to contact those who still haven’t responded.

The final census count must be delivered to the president by Dec. 31, 2020.

Is it secure?
By law, your information is CONFIDENTIAL.
The U.S. Census Bureau collects data for statistical purposes only and cannot share or publish any household-specific census data including: name, address, Social Security number or phone number.
The U.S. Census Bureau will not identify your household, any person in your household or business.

For more information about the census, visit w3.michigan.gov/census2020.

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