Amid the COVID-19 daily changes to our everyday “normal,” the business of being a citizen goes on. Let’s change the subject here for a few moments. Have you or your household received the 2020 Census instructions yet? Mine came, along with a follow-up reminder the next day to submit the form. It is a Constitutional requirement that the population is counted every 10 years. Article 1, section 2, states:
“Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct.”
This means that by law, the inhabitants of our country and its territories must be counted. Here are a few things that you should know about the 2020 Census:
- No question about your social security number, bank account, or credit cards is asked
- You will not be asked for your political party affiliation.
- You will not be asked for money.
- You are required by law to fill out the census. If you have no online access, the instructions give you additional ways to file your information.
- It takes about 10 minutes to fill out and submit.
- If you don’t respond online, you will be mailed a paper questionnaire.
- The census is available in many languages, and help is also available.
- There is no citizenship question.
The census determines representation in Congress. District lines change when the population changes. If your state has lost population, you may have fewer representatives in Congress. If your state has a booming population, you may gain more representation in Congress as a result. The Census numbers are also used by communities to fund programs in your community as well.
OK, so I’m going to fill my form out now and let you know how it went….
… I’m back. It was completed in about 5 minutes. The census was straightforward for my household.
With all of the changes in our daily lives, it would be easy to lose track of the census. I recommend filling it out right away. “Git ‘er done,” as they say 🙂
If you would like to learn more:
This is Common Sense Civics and Citizenship. ??