Everyone Counts


By Melissa Segrest

At the start of every decade, all people living in the United States and its territories are counted. A request for you to participate in the 2020 census could arrive in your mailbox by the middle of March. 

The Census Bureau will ask how many people were living or staying in your house, apartment or mobile home on April 1, 2020. It also will ask for some information about each of the residents. 

Your privacy is protected, and answers are anonymous. They are for statistics only and cannot be used against you in any way. The Census Bureau cannot legally release responses that could identify you or your household to the public or government agencies. The law states that no personal information can be released for any reason for 72 years. The findings will begin to be made public by Dec. 31, 2020. 

You can respond by mail, online or by calling a toll-free number. Residents of remote areas or those who don’t submit a census form may be visited by a door- knocking representative. 

Get more information and answers to frequently asked questions online at census. gov or by calling 800-923-8282. 

— Information courtesy of U.S. Census Bureau and


1. The Constitution mandates that everyone in the country be counted every 10 years.

2. Census results are used to determine how many seats Texas and the region has in the U.S. House of Representatives. That ensures fair representation in Congress.

3. Census results can determine how much money is needed in Texas or locally for schools, hospitals, public works, emergency preparedness, public safety, community initiatives and more. It totals about $675 billion nationally.

4. Texas and our region have grown a lot in the last 10 years, and that data is used to redraw boundaries of U.S. congressional and state legislative districts for a decade.

5. It is your civic duty! Completing the census is mandatory and a fundamental way to participate in our nation’s democracy. 


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