The 2020 Census: Participation and Why it Matters

Posted on March 11th, 2020

While April 1st may signify a day of laughter, pranks, and light hearted jokes for many, this year the high spirited day also marks the beginning of a constitutional right of passage, the national census.

Did you know that about 5% of children under the age of 5 years old went unreported during the 2010 census? That is nearly 1 million children. As the largest demographic of unreported people, the community organizations serving these children did not receive funding to assist with services.

To combat this lack of accurate reporting from negatively impacting the children of Marion County in the 2020 census, Child Advocates, like many other youth-serving organizations, has partnered with the US Census Bureau. Together, we aim to engage, educate and encourage our community members to participate in the 2020 census.

By April 1st all households within the United States of America will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 census. Participation takes an average of 10 minutes and can take place by mail, online or over the phone.

Although some may deem the right as more of an obligation, providing honest and accurate responses to the prompted questions is a civic duty our community, especially our children, cannot afford to pass up.

The census is designed to collect personally recorded demographic data regarding the number of persons in the home, their age, sex, race and total household income. All information collected by the US Census Bureau is kept completely confidential and used mainly for the purpose of providing accurate representation based on current population distribution.

In addition to public representation, the government utilizes the numerical information regarding the number of persons per region to allocate over $675 billion in local funding. In other words, the amount of money allocated to local programs, such as Child Advocates, is determined by the number of individuals reported in the designated area.

Child Advocates wants to ensure that all children in the Marion County foster care system are counted and accurately represented in the 2020 census, and we are not alone.

Take a look at what our friends over at Sesame Street have to say about the importance of accurate reporting in this year’s upcoming census!

To learn more about the 2020 census and how to participate, go to www.2020census.gov