2020 Census
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Census data helps determine allocation of government resources and ensure fair political representation for Floridians and all Americans.

Why Census 2020?
Institutions across the state, including foundations, routinely rely on data from the census to allocate funding, define where services are delivered and promote economic development. Florida has so much at stake, and we need to ensure a fair and accurate census. FPN & FNA have been traveling the state since 2018. We have visited a dozen cities with many more to come! 

More than one third (33.2%) of Florida’s general revenues come from federal aid ($25.5 billion). Without an accurate Census, Florida residents could be denied the full funding they deserve and need – and elected officials won’t be able to make informed decisions for your constituents for more than a decade on a range of issues.

More than $600 billion annually in federal assistance to states, localities, and families is distributed based on census data, yet historically, the census has missed disproportionate numbers of people of color, young children and the rural and urban poor, leading to inequality in political power and in access to public funding and private investment for these communities. Going into 2020, additional communities, including immigrants and refugees, unmarried women and the LGBTQ community are at risk of being missed.

If you think underfunding the Census won't affect your community, consider that $45 billion in funds is distributed annually to our state for 55 large federal spending programs based on census data. Being hard-to-count can lead to unequal political representation and unequal access to vital public and private resources for these groups and their communities. 

October 13, 2020 Update

Self-response and field data collection operations for the 2020 Census will conclude on October 15, 2020. 

October 7, 2020 Update

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit denied in part and granted in part the government’s request to stay the California District Court’s injunctions blocking the Trump administration’s effort to rush the collection and processing of 2020 Census data. 

  • The Court denied the government’s request to stop counting operations before October 31. This means that self-response and Nonresponse Follow-up (NRFU) will continue through October 31, and households have until October 31 to self-respond to the 2020 Census.
  • The Court granted the government’s request to stay the portion of the Order that would stop the Census Bureau and Commerce Secretary from compiling the apportionment data and reporting those numbers to the president by December 31, until the 9thCircuit rules on the merits of the government’s appeal. This means that the Secretary may transmit data to the president for apportionment by December 31, unless Congress extends the statutory deadline through legislation (that the president must sign).

You can find the latest legal developments on the Brennan Center’s census litigation tracker.


First, we must continue to lift up the message that it is not too late to be counted, either via self-response (online, by phone, or using a paperform) or by answering a few questions from a door-to-door enumerator.

  • Here are graphics and talking points to support your Get Out the Count outreach.
  • Here is guidance on how to incorporate census outreach into your GOTV work if your organization is considering combining activities.
  • The latest data on self-response, total response rates and NRFU completion rates can be found on the CUNY Mapping Service Census HTC 2020 map at: https://www.censushardtocountmaps2020.us/ 

October 2, 2020 Update

As a result of court orders, the October 5, 2020 target date is not operative, and data collection operations will continue through October 31, 2020.

September 29, 2020 Update

As you may have seen, last night, the Census Bureau tweeted "the Secretary of Commerce has announced a target date of October 5, 2020 to conclude 2020 Census self-response and field data collection operations" and issued this corresponding statement

This follows, last weeks' preliminary Injunction prohibiting the administration from further implementing the rushed operational plan (the rushed plan that had forced the Census Bureau to finish data collection by September 30 and to process, tabulate, and report to the president state population totals used for congressional apportionment by the current statutory deadline of 12/31/20) and the governments' subsequent appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The Ninth Circuit has not yet responded to the governments' appeal.  Judge Koh, the California federal district court judge presiding over the National Urban League case, has ordered the administration to produce the administrative record for this decision to conclude on October 5 by 10 a.m. PT today.  The litigators will be back in court this evening. 

The Census Bureau has advised that according to this October 5th plan:

  • The online response website will be open through October 5, 20020 closing Hawaii time at midnight (meaning 11:59pm and 59 seconds).
  • The phone response lines (what the Census Bureau calls CQA) will be open for their normal operating hours through October 5, 2020.
  • Paper forms need to be postmarked by October 5th and received by October 12.
  • Mobile Questionnaire Assistance will continue through October 5th but in a limited capacity.  

Why Census Matters to Communities?

An accurate census helps ensure fair representation at all levels of government. The primary constitutional purpose for the decennial census is to determine how many congressional representatives each state will have for the next decade and to ensure equal representation in the redistricting process. For instance, congressional districts and the boundaries of your city ward are determined by census numbers.

The census directly impacts the funding your city will receive over the next decade. Population counts and statistics derived from both the decennial census and other surveys determine the annual allocation of more than $800 billion in federal investment across states, counties and cities. While many financial assistance programs and block grants, like the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), are distributed to cities based on American Community Survey (ACS) statistics, the benchmark for all ACS data is the decennial census.

The census provides the most reliable and complete data for research, decision making and planning for both the public and private sectors. Academic institutions, medical facilities, businesses of all sizes and all levels of government rely on census data to inform their research, decision making and planning. While the decennial census only asks a few basic questions, the population counts and demographic data that it produces serve as a benchmark for most other current statistics that help us gain deeper insights into our communities. 


Census Hard To Count Community Tracker

Census Bureau materials

Census 2020 Guidebook

Census 2020 Florida convening Powerpoint

Census 2020 one pager

Census 2020 one pager in Spanish

Census 2020 FAQ

Census Confidentiality  

Census Hard to Count Map

Census Counts Kids 

Census Financial Impact on Florida

Census 2020 and Nonprofits

Census 2020 Toolkit in Spanish

Census 2020 Toolkit

Municipal Action Guide

Sample Social Media Posts




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