WHAT IS “THE CENSUS?”
WHY DOES THE UNITED STATES CENSUS EXIST?
HOW DO I PARTICIPATE IN THE 2020 CENSUS?
Download a fact sheet from the United States Census Bureau!
This code number is very important. It is unique to you. Do not give it to anyone outside of your household and try not to lose it.
You will use this code number to log onto the Census website and complete the Census form online. You can go to the Census website and fill out the form on any device that can access the internet: personal computer, smartphone, tablet, etc.
Every household will have the option of responding online, by mail, or by phone.
The mail from the Census Bureau may also include a paper Census form. If you do not have access to the internet, you can fill in the paper form and mail it back to the Census Bureau.
You must complete your Census form by April 1, 2020.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I DON’T RESPOND BY APRIL 1, 2020?
I DON’T WANT TO PARTICIPATE IN THE CENSUS, DO I HAVE TO?
WHAT DOES THE GOVERNMENT DO WITH THE INFORMATION THEY COLLECT IN THE CENSUS?
The federal government also uses the information collected in the Census to decide how to allocate over $800 billion to family and community programs. The Top 10 Census-Guided Federal Programs are:
• Supplemental Nutritional Assistance (SNAP)
• Highway Planning and Construction
• Section 8 Housing
• Title 1 Grants to Local Education Agencies
• National School Lunch Program
• Special Education Grants
• State Children’s Health Insurance (CHIP)
• Head Start / Early Head Start
I AM NOT A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES. SHOULD I PARTICIPATE IN THE CENSUS?
As of March 2019, The New Jersey Office of the Attorney General has a set of rules called the “Immigrant Trust Directive” that prevent police officers from stopping, questioning, or detaining people if they have not committed a crime, simply because they may be undocumented. New Jersey police officers are not allowed to participate in ICE raids, nor can they provide ICE with local police department records.
You can read an English-language summary of the Directive here, or visit the Office of the Attorney General website to access the content in several other languages.
I AM INVOLVED IN UNLAWFUL OR UNETHICAL ACTIVITIES. SHOULD I PARTICIPATE IN THE CENSUS?
The United States Census Bureau cannot arrest or prosecute you based on the answers on your Census form. Even if a Census worker comes to your home and asks you questions in person, they cannot make any judgments or legal assessments of your answers—they can only write the answers down on the form. Employees of the US Census Bureau are prohibited from sharing any individual’s information with anyone, even other government agencies. The fine for divulging private information is $250,000 and 5 years in jail.