The 2020 U.S. Census is an Opportunity for all Alexandrians to be Counted

Census data will be used for the next ten years to make sure Alexandria residents are fairly represented in state and federal government

Alexandria, va – In March 2020, every household in the United States will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census.

The Census is important because it is used to apportion seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and allocate over $675 billion in federal resources to state and local governments. The City of Alexandria uses Census data to learn about our population and serve all residents equitably. Whether you were born in the U.S., moved here 10 years ago, or moved here 10 days ago, you are entitled to your share of representation and resources!

What is the Census?

The Decennial Census (Census) is a full count of United States residents, which includes all people who live in the United States. The Census is conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau every ten years, and is mandated under Article 1, Section 2 of the US Constitution.

After collecting data from households, the Census Bureau processes those data to protect every resident’s privacy. It then aggregates the data, and disseminates the results to the President, the states, and the American people. Census data are most prominently used to:

  • Apportion seats in the U.S. House of Representatives
  • Distribute over $675 billion federal dollars to state and local governments
  • Redistrict at the federal, state, and local levels
  • Provide statistical support for grant applications
  • Help communities, like the City of Alexandria, plan for future needs

The City of Alexandria’s Complete Count Committee is supporting the 2020 Census by motivating all Alexandria residents to participate in the Census. The Committee welcomes Alexandria residents, businesses, and organizations to participate in Census outreach efforts.


How will the Census affect me?

In March 2020, all residential addresses will receive a invitation in the mail to participate in the 2020 Census. You may respond online, over the phone, or by mail depending on your preference. The online Census form is available in 12 languages other than English, and language guides are available for 60 languages.

Census Day is April 1, 2020. Households that have not participated in the Census by this point may be contacted at their home by a Census Bureau representative.

Any information you share with the Census Bureau is strictly confidential. By law the Census Bureau cannot share individual responses with anyone, including any court of law, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Internal Revenue Service, state or federal welfare departments, or governments and programs. The Census Bureau only uses individual responses to produce summary statistics, which further protects individuals from being identified inadvertently.


What questions are on the Census?

The 2020 Census will ask:

  1. How many people are living or staying in your home on April 1, 2020
  2. Whether the home is owned or rented
  3. Each person’s sex
  4. Each person’s age
  5. Each person’s race
  6. Whether each person is of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin
  7. The relationship of each person to the householder

A sample 2020 Census questionnaire is available online here. 

THE CENSUS BUREAU WILL NEVER ASK CERTAIN QUESTIONS

The Census Bureau will never ask for:

  • Your social security number
  • Money or donations
  • Your bank account or credit card numbers

For more information, visit the Census Bureau’s website on avoiding fraud and scams.


How can I get involved?

Volunteer to support the City of Alexandria’s Complete Count Committee. The Committee is responsible for educating Alexandria residents about the 2020 Census, and motivating all residents to participate. Volunteers may assist the Committee by:

  • Staffing events to promote the Census,
  • Hosting events in their communities,
  • Sharing knowledge about the Census in their communities,
  • Distributing print materials throughout Alexandria, or
  • Helping residents respond to the 2020 Census

The Census Bureau is currently hiring representatives to support the 2020 Census. For more information on employment opportunities, visit the U.S. Census Bureau webpage.


Census Ambassador Training

To help make sure all residents are counted, the City of Alexandria is looking for volunteers to help spread the word about the 2020 Census. The City’s Complete Count Committee is training community members to become Census Ambassadors, who will help residents learn what the questions will be on the Census; how the Census will take place; and how the Census benefits Alexandria.

Census Ambassador training is open to the public and sessions are available:

  • Thursday, February 13, 3:30 – 5:30 pm
    Chinquapin Park Recreation Center and Aquatics Facility (3210 King Street)
  • Saturday, February 22, noon – 2:00 pm
    William Ramsay Recreation Center (5650 Sanger Avenue)
  • Sunday, March 15, 2:00 – 4:00 pm
    Duncan Branch Library (2501 Commonwealth Avenue)
  • Tuesday, March 31, 6:30 – 7:30 pm
    Patrick Henry Recreation Center (4653 Taney Avenue)

Refreshments will be provided, and translation services are available upon request.

Please RSVP here!