top of page

2020 Census

Updated: Mar 12, 2020

Notice from the Pennsylvania Census website:

On April 1, 2020 the U.S. Census Bureau will be counting all residents living in the United States. In Pennsylvania, we’re committed to working together to make sure all our neighbors are included in the census. We encourage all Pennsylvanians to learn more about the 2020 Census, your role as a resident, and explore ideas and downloadable materials you can use to help spread the word about the upcoming census.

Our population count determines the federal support Pennsylvanians receive for the next ten years for education, healthcare, housing, food security, roads, and more.


Decennial Census Also known as the Population and Housing Census, the Decennial U.S. Census counts every resident in the United States. It is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution and takes place every 10 years. The data collected by the decennial census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and is also used to distribute billions in federal funds to local communities.The census tells us who we are and where we are going as a nation, and helps our communities determine where to build everything from schools to supermarkets, and from homes to hospitals. It helps the government decide how to distribute funds and assistance to states and localities. It is also used to draw the lines of legislative districts and reapportion the seats each State holds in Congress.The 2010 Census represented the most massive participation movement ever witnessed in our country. Approximately 74 percent of the households returned their census forms by mail; the remaining households were counted by census workers walking neighborhoods throughout the United States.

The U.S. census counts each resident of the country, where they live on April 1, every ten years ending in zero. The Constitution mandates the enumeration to determine how to apportion the House of Representatives among the states.


2020 Census Research, Operational Plans, and Oversight



  • The U.S. Constitution requires a census of all residents every 10 years.

  • Every person living in the U.S. is counted once and only once.

  • You are counted based on where you are living on April 1, 2020.

  • Data from the census informs government decisions for 10 years.


Fair representation & legislative redistricting

The Census determines:

  • How many seats PA has in the U.S. House of Representatives

  • How U.S. congressional and state legislative districts are redrawn

$675+ billion in federal public funding

The Census determines how much funding each state receives for the next 10 years.

Pennsylvania receives $26.8 billion each year

That’s $2,000 per Pennsylvanian.


Federal funding impacts

  • every community

  • every neighborhood

  • every infant and child

  • every foreign and U.S. citizen

  • every family and every individual


2020 Census will determine how much access our communities have to quality healthcare.

Medicare (Part B); Medicaid; CHIP; WIC; Healthcare Centers


2020 Census will determine how much food support children, adults, and seniors receive.

SNAP; School Breakfast Program; National School Lunch Program; Child and Adult Care Food Program


2020 Census will determine how much we invest in the futures of our children.

Federal Pell Grants; Federal Direct Student Loans; Title I Grants to Local Educational Agencies; Special Education Grants; Head Start


2020 Census will determine how much safe, affordable housing is available.

  • Very Low to Moderate Income Housing Loans

  • Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers

  • Section 8 Housing Assistance Payments

  • Public and Indian Housing

  • Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Entitlement Program

  • Public Housing Capital Fund


2020 Census determines how much funding rural areas receive for services and infrastructure.

  • Rural Electrification Loans and Loan Guarantees

  • Water and Waste Disposal Systems for Rural Communities

  • Rural Rental Assistance Payments

  • Business and Industry Loans

  • Cooperative Extension Services


Do not respond if asked about the following:

  1. Social Security Number (SSN)

  2. Bank or credit card information

  3. Money or donations

  4. Anything on behalf of a political party

Ask to see an official Census ID badge

  1. 1-800-923-8282 to verify a worker’s identity

  2. Report suspicious activity to your local police department

If you respond online, check the website address begins with HTTPS and has a lock symbol


bottom of page