U.S. Census 2020: You Count!!

Visit the Census 2020 page for more informaiton and resources or review our guide to the 2020 Census.

What It Is

Every 10 years, the U.S. Census counts every person and housing unit in the United States. It is mandated in the Constitution to apportion Congress. Your privacy is protected. It is against the law to publicly release responses that could identify you or your household. By law, your responses cannot be used against you. The Census Bureau will NEVER ask for social security numbers, bank or credit card numbers, money or donations, or anything on behalf of a political party. 

How to Respond 

April 1st, 2020 is Census Day. Almost all households will receive their census invitation in the mail. You will have the option of responding online, by mail, or by phone. You can respond in many languages and accessibility is provided for everyone. Include everyone in your household. Be sure to count your children and infants. It is your civic duty to take part and completing the census is mandatory.

What It Does for You

Census data are widely and wisely used all around you and your community. The census: 

  • Determines the funding level for many public services, grants, and support in your community so that Iowa and your community gets its fair share of federal funding programs.

  • Guides local community planning and critical decisions.

  • Determines your fair representation in the U.S. Congress and the Iowa Legislature. 

  • Guides business development, investment, and planning. 

  • Contributes to a better future for you, your family, your community, and for Iowa.


An Undercount in Iowa = Federal Funding Loss 

Because many federal funds are distributed based on Census data, Iowa will lose some portion of federal funds every year between 2020 and 2030 for each person missed. It is estimated that an undercount in Iowa of: 

  • 1/10 of one percent = loss $89.6 million from 2020-2030 
  • 1/4th of one percent = loss $224 million from 2020-2030 
  • one percent = loss $896 million from 2020 to 2030 


Questions Asked in the 2020 Census 

  • How many people are living or staying at your home on April 1, 2020. 

  • Whether the home is owned or rented. 

  • About the sex, age, and race of each person in your home. 

  • About whether a person in your home is of Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin. 

  • About the relationship of each person in your home. 

  • A phone number for a person in the home. 

The Census will NOT ask about citizenship or immigration status. 


How You Can Help 

  • Respond to your Census invitation! 
  • Spread the word to your family, friends, and colleagues.
  • Publicize the Census at community organizations and events. 


Useful Guides and Sites