Census FAQ’s 


Why is it important that I participate in the census?

First and foremost, YOU COUNT! Over the next decade, lawmakers, business owners, and many others will use 2020 Census data to make critical decisions. The results will show where communities need new schools, new clinics, new roads, and more services for families, older adults, and children.


Almost every program that is funded by the federal government relies on census data to allocate billions of dollars to states. As a result, many programs that are integral to communities are funded by census outcomes. These programs range from food assistance programs to educational programs to community health programs. Examples of these programs include: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), National School Lunch Program, Child Health Insurance Plan (CHIP), Medicaid, Federal Pell Grants, Federal funding for local schools attended by children from low-income families, Head Start programs, along with hundreds more programs that many communities rely on. 


In addition, shifting populations help decide where district lines are drawn for political representation. Due to a growing population, Colorado stands to gain an additional Congressional seat, if we achieve an accurate census count. 


Will I be asked for my citizenship status on the census? Is there a citizenship question?

No. The census only has ten questions and your citizenship status is not one of them. 


Should I still complete the census if I am living in the United States as an undocumented immigrant or DACA recipient?

Yes! The census is meant to count all people living in the U.S. on April 1, 2020. Our undocumented community members have very few opportunities for civic engagement. Census participation is one of the only instances where undocumented community members can participate and gain funding for their communities. 


Will it take long to complete my census form?

Depending on your household size, the average census form takes 10 minutes to complete. The census only asks ten questions per household member. 


What kind of information will the census ask me to provide?

The census asks minimal personal information. You will be asked for your address, name, age, sex, phone number, ethnicity, race, whether you rent or own, and for household relationship. The census will not ask you for citizenship status, social security number, bank account information, credit card numbers, or political affiliation. If you are asked for any of this information on your census form, do not continue! The website or paper form is fraudulent and should be reported to the census bureau for investigation. 


I’m not sure if I already did my census. I thought I filled it out, but I am still receiving notice that I did not, or I still received a paper form. Should I do it again?

If in doubt, fill it out (again)! It is possible that the survey completed previously was the American Community Survey, which is still administered by the census bureau but is different from the decennial census. Unfortunately, there is no way to verify whether you have previously completed your decennial census by contacting the census bureau due to confidentiality, but the census bureau has a process to de-duplicate responses. If you are unsure whether or not you completed your census or you are still receiving notification from the census bureau to complete your census, you can submit it again without fear. The census bureau prefers having to de-duplicate than to experience an undercount. 

Additionally, if you live in an area that is identified for Update/Leave Operations (meaning that a census worker will drop off a paper form to your home), you will still receive a paper form even if you previously completed your census online or on the phone. 


I already filled out my census, but I didn’t include a household member. What should I do?

You can resubmit your census. The census bureau has a process to de-duplicate responses but no process to make up for an undercount. 


I still have not received an invitation to fill out the census online, nor have I received a paper census form. What should I do?

You can still complete your census online or over the phone without a unique identifier. You will just need to provide an address when completing your census without the unique identifier ID. 


Some households have not received any census materials because they are in rural locations. Starting May 18th, 2020 the Census Bureau will be resuming field operations in Colorado known as Update/Leave operations. This operation is for households in rural areas, seasonal housing, and areas that primarily use P.O. Boxes. For Update/Leave a Census Bureau worker will drop off a census form at the door or gate and update the address in the Census Bureau system. This operation is critical as the households in the Update/Leave area have received no information directly from the Census Bureau. The Update/Leave operation does not have any contact with householders. Census Bureau workers will not be ringing doorbells or interacting with residents. Census Bureau workers will be wearing personal protective equipment and will be following social distancing guidelines. 


I have a tenant living with me in my home, should I include them on my census form?

Yes, that tenant should be included on your census form as part of your household, even if they are unrelated to you or are unauthorized tenants. 


Including an unauthorized tenant will not get you in trouble with the authorities because the census bureau cannot share your information with other agencies or entities. All of your responses are maintained within the census bureau and census employees take an oath to keep your responses confidential. Any census employee that breaks that oath will face prosecution punishable by a prison sentence and a substantial fine. 


I rent a room and I am not sure if the homeowner included me as part of the household on their census form. How can I make sure I have been counted in the census?

You can log on to the census website at my2020census.gov or call 844-330-2020 to complete the census for yourself. 


Can I still complete the census if I do not speak English?

Yes, the online form has the ability to translate to the following languages: English, Spanish, Chinese (Simplified), Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, 

Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Japanese. The census bureau has more information on accessing various languages at https://www.2020census.gov/en/ways-to-respond/responding-online.html

To find out which languages are supported for phone completion, please go to https://www.2020census.gov/en/ways-to-respond/responding-by-phone.html

If I have more questions, how can I get them answered?

You can get your questions answered by submitting an email to Emily Cervantes at CLLARO at emily.cervantes@cllaro.org.


However, if you have a pressing question or need assistance in a language other than English or Spanish, the following resources are available for immediate answers and can accommodate various language needs:


Together We Count-Live chat 

https://www.togetherwecount.org or text 303.622.5881


Want to talk to someone live? 

  1. NALEO Education Fund (877)-EL-CENSO or (877)-352-3676 ENGLISH AND SPANISH

  2. Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (888)-COUNT20 or (888)-268-6820 ENGLISH

  3. Arab American Institute (833)- 3DDOUNI or (833)-333-6864 ENGLISH AND ARABIC

  4. Asian Americans Advancing Justice (844)-2020API or (844)-202-0274 ENGLISH, MANDARIN, CANTONESE, KOREAN, VIETNAMESE, TAGALOG, URDU, HINDI, BENGALI/BANGLA

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