The census is conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau every ten years. The Constitution requires that every person in the United States be counted—adults, children and babies, citizens, immigrants, and anyone living in this country.
Data collected is protected by law and cannot be shared with other government agencies. This year, it’s never been easier to fill out the census either online, by telephone, or by mail.
Why is the Census important?
States use census data to determine representation in Congress. States and localities also use census data to plan where health clinics, schools, and roads will be built.
The federal government uses census data to help allocate over $800 billion a year in federal funds. In 2016, Maine received $4.1 billion in federal funds informed by census data.
The impact of COVID-19 on the 2020 Census
It has never been easier to respond on your own, whether online, over the phone or by mail—all without having to meet a census taker. With the flexibility and support of the American people, the Census bureau still aims to achieve a complete and accurate count in 2020.
The latest news: The U.S. Census Bureau has announced that it is extending the enumeration period—self-response and non-response follow up—until October 31, 2020, in order to protect workers and communities during this health crisis, while still giving itself enough time to pursue a full and accurate count.
Timeline for the 2020 Census
As of June 24, 2020, only 53.2% of Maine households had completed the 2020 census, ranking Maine 48 among the 50 states. It’s imperative to ensure an accurate count in 2020, so everyone gets the resources and representation they deserve. The populations which tend to have the highest risk of being undercounted are rural communities and communities with people of color. As a result, Maine is at risk of being undercounted, so MAKE MAINE COUNT by doing the following:
- Fill out the census!
- Online: www.2020census.gov
- By Phone: 1-800-923-8282
- By Mail: fill out your invitation!
- Encourage others to fill out the census. As trusted messengers, nonprofit organizations play a vital role in helping to increase the response rate. Maine currently has one of the lowest response rates in the nation.
- Get creative and create your own graphics to share through your communications channels. Creatives for the Count has a downloadable toolkit and a massive gallery of images to get inspired by!
Contact MANP’s Director of Advocacy + Public Affairs, Sarah Skillin Woodard, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resources + Recent News
- Maine Complete Count Committee Information
- Our View: Maine will lose out if census is cut short (August 5, 2020, Portland Press Herald)
- Census Door Knocking Cut A Month Short Amid Pressure To Finish Count (July 30, 2020, NPR)
- Census Takers Begin Making House Calls in Maine (July 16, 2020, U.S. News & World Report)
- Maine city to help launch new phase of the U.S. Census (July 2, 2020, WMTW)
- Northern Maine is so isolated that census workers have to count the population door-to-door (June 20, 2020, Bangor Daily News)
- Completing Census questionnaire helps towns get their ‘fair share’ (June 20, 2020, Wiscasset Newspaper)
- Why Maine Nonprofits Should Care About the 2020 Census (MANP Blog Post)
- Mainers Need an Accurate Census (Maine Children’s Alliance)
- Counting for Dollars (George Washington Institute of Public Policy)
- Census 101 (U.S. Census Bureau)
- Census FAQ (U.S. Census Bureau)
- Why Does the Census Ask That (PRB)
- Track Census Response Rates (U.S. Census Bureau)
- MANP Webinar: 2020 Census Overview (Recorded Jan. 30, 2020)
- Census 2020 – What is the 2020 Census?
- Census 2020 – Is My Census 2020 Data Safe?
- Why We Need to Count All Kids in Census 2020
- The Census and Education
Maine Census Graphics to Download + Share on Social Media