2020 Census

FAQ

Why do we have a Census?

Simply put, the census is what is used to determine how and where tax funds are used and how regions are represented in Congress and the Electoral College. This year’s census data will affect how many representatives Illinois has in the House and how much funding our community receives for schools, libraries, and other services we rely on.

What kinds of questions will the Census ask?

The census will ask questions about you and your household–age, heritage, race, and relationships. You can get an overview and more details about the Census questions here. During the 2020 Census, the Census Bureau will never ask you for your Social Security number, money or donations, anything on behalf of a political party, or your bank or credit card account numbers

Who should I count when responding?

Everyone who is under your roof as of April 1, 2020. This includes all children–even a child born on April 1! For more specific scenarios and further information on who to count, go here.

How long will it take to fill out the Census?

This depends on how many people are in your household, but it should take about 10 minutes.

Can I skip any questions?

You can skip questions and submit an incomplete form, but you may receive a call or visit from a Census worker.

Will the Census ask about my citizenship/immigration status?

The Census will not ask about your citizenship or immigration status. The federal courts blocked any citizenship questions from being on the 2020 Census.

How can I respond to the Census?

Our county is almost entirely self-reporting. You will receive an invitation to take the census sometime in March. You can follow the instructions you receive to respond via phone, mail, or online.

map showing Peoria County explaining how 95% of the county is designated as Self-Response by the Census Bureau
This helpful video walks you through the online form and what you can expect to see

Is my Census data safe?

Yes! The Census Bureau goes through great pains to keep your data safe and has many laws and regulations on how to do so. There has also been much done to ensure the online Census forms will be secure from cyberthreats, and the Bureau is continuing to labor to ensure your data is safe and anonymous.

What is the Census timeline?

A graphic highlights the Census timeline. January: Census questionaire assistance available. February: group quarters contacted. March 12: Internet self-response period begins. March 30: service based enumeration begins. April 1: Census day! April: group quarters counted. May 13: non-response follow up begins.

What is the Library’s role in all of this?

We’re offering our free wifi and internet access terminals to make sure you can fill out your Census response! Public access computers are available from open until 15 minutes before close every day.

Helpful Links

The Official 2020 Census Website can be found here

To avoid Census scams and frauds, be sure to check this page

Here is an interactive map that discusses how the Census will reach Hard to Count areas

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