2020 Census – Everyone in the United States gets counted every ten years. Census participation affects federal funding for education, health care, firefighting, etc. and the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives. Surveys will be delivered to each household by April 1. Response can be by mail, phone, or Internet. Library staff will assist online responders. Starting the end of May, enumerators will knock on doors of every home that has not responded. For more information, contact U.S. Census Partnership Specialist Barbara Miranda (925-890-5592), Complete Count Committee Chair Deborah Snyder (907-987-2976), City Clerk Pat White (907-895-4219), or visit census websites (2020census.gov and alaskacounts.org).
10 Minutes … 10 Questions … 10 Years of Impact
Census data is collected every ten years. The first census was conducted in 1790 by 16 U.S. marshals and 650 assistants over a period of 18 months.
Census data affects congressional representation, reapportionment, and redistricting. It is beneficial for planning, i.e. projecting need for day care facilities or retirement homes.
Billions of dollars are distributed by the U.S. government every year, based on population. Each person in Alaska brings in $2,959 per year ($29,590 over ten years). Government funding pays for roads, job training centers, schools, grants, housing, medical assistance programs, health centers, etc.
Education is mandated for every American. It and all government-funded programs are based on population. Everyone needs to be counted, so adequate funding is distributed fairly.
In 2010, Alaska had the lowest census participation in the nation (64%). The participation rate for Southeast Fairbanks, Delta Junction and its surrounding area, was 18%. Lack of participation denies Delta Junction and all of Alaska its share of the $675 billion disbursed by the government annually.
Personally identifiable census data is required to be kept confidential for 72 years.
Those interested in census work can apply online (2020census.gov/jobs). Hourly pay ranges from $28 to $31 per hour and start dates vary. All applicants must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years old. Most jobs start in early spring of 2020. Census employees will be compensated for training hours, mileage, and other travel expenses.
Enumerators, aka field workers or census takers, will deliver surveys to every home. Response can be mailed in, called in, or submitted online. To ensure a complete count in 2020, enumerators will return to residences that do not respond.