2020 Census Fact Sheet

2020 Census Fact Sheet (PDF)

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Independent Sector

Attaining an Impartial & Accurate Count in the 2020 Census Should Be a Nonpartisan, National Priority

State of Play: “The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the census administration process in ways previously unimaginable”

Forthcoming legislation must account for unforeseen delays in the census process, ensure appropriate extensions of deadlines, and enhance necessary oversight of these changes.

Immediate Action is Needed to Ensure That Every Person is Counted.

  • Every 10 years, the United States government conducts the census — a national accounting of everyone living in every state, D.C. & 5 U.S. Territories to assess demographic changes and population growth. Census results are used to determine proportional political representation, redistricting, Congressional apportionment, and emergency response
  • Not only is this crucial exercise used to equitably distribute hundreds of billions of federal dollars to state and local municipalities, its findings influence policymaking for public sector investments such as infrastructure, affordable housing, healthcare programs, educational grants, and more
  • The global pandemic has derailed many initiatives to ensure everyone in our communities is counted. As a result, those experiencing homelessness, non-English speakers, LGBTQ+, racial minorities and other “hard to count” populations are not fully engaged in the census process
  • Provisions in the next relief package must include $400 million to increase the emergency budget for the 2020 census, $10 million to further support current surveys, and a delay of statutory deadlines by four months for census reporting of 2020 results

Nonprofits Have a Responsibility to Fight the Undercount.

Vulnerable communities that have been disproportionally impacted by COVID-19 are at greater risk of being undercounted— which will perpetuate a vicious cycle of exclusion for another decade. Those who are qualified should be guaranteed their constitutional right to be equally represented through the apportionment and redistricting processes that follow. Significant funding must be secured to ensure that the constitutional right of fair and equal participation is not infringed upon

The Nonprofit Sector Relies Upon Accurate Census Data.

The U.S. Census is foundational to the functioning of civil society and drives nonprofit decision-making as the nonprofit sector relies upon accurate Census data to measure community needs, develop community solutions, target services, and track progress. It is incumbent upon Congress to protect the participatory democracy that has been integral to nonprofit success

Nonprofits Are Trusted Sources of Information — Our Collective Advocacy is More Important Now than Ever.

Research indicates that nonprofit roots and trust within communities provide ample opportunity to increase civic engagement among those who are regularly excluded from the democratic process. Our natural engagement assets and unparalleled reach make us particularly well suited to encourage active civic participation. As the nation’s third largest employer, nonprofits are able to organize 12.3 million employees and mobilize networks of donors, volunteers, and constituents across 1.5 million organizations

Take Action

The COVID-19 crisis cannot impede our pursuit to build fair, vibrant, and equitable communities. Submit a letter to your member of Congress today to urge them to pass emergency provisions to ensure a fair and complete count

Originally Published: 2020-08-06
Global Topics: COVID-19 Public Policy, COVID-19 Response, Public Policy
Policy Issues: Nonprofit Operations