Some residents of Illinois and other states have been receiving mailers that look like the official 2020 Census, but are not. They are actually a survey and fundraising document.
Know that the real, official 2020 Census does not ask anything about:
Invitations for the REAL, official 2020 Census will go in the mail on March 12. If you receive anything before then, it is suspect. Be wary. Report suspicious mail or calls at 1-800-923-8282 or visit https://www.2020census.gov/en/avoiding-fraud.html
*Note: the American Community Survey, which is an official US Census Bureau poll, does ask about citizenship, as it has for several years. Only about 1% of households receive this survey each year. And they did not pause this survey this year — so there is a 1% chance a person has a “real” census mailer that includes this question. Learn more about ACS here.
It will be easier than ever for everyone to respond to the 2020 Census. The online response portal will make it possible to respond anytime, anywhere, and from any device.
The online portal and telephone response line will be available in Spanish, Chinese (simplified Chinese for online questionnaire; both Mandarin and Cantonese for phone), Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Japanese. Together, these languages cover more than 99% of U.S. households.
In addition, the US Census Bureau has created printable step-by-step instructions in 59 non-English languages helps non-English speakers fill out the paper questionnaire. A large print and Braille guide in BRF format, are also available.
Video language guides narrated in those same 59 languages will help people respond online.
Census takers with a Language Identification Card that features a brief statement in the 59 languages. If the census taker encounters a language barrier at the door, they can request that a census taker who speaks the household’s language returns to complete the interview.
Quickly find Fact Sheets and a Language Guides binder cover, spine label, and printable tabs with all 60 languages on the Resources page.
Thank you to the League of Women Voters - Deerfield Area who used their table at the North Shore Unitarian Church Value the Vote Fair to spread the word about 2020 Census jobs. They also left materials with the minister for church members who may be interested in working for the Census. Co-president Rosemary Heilemann reports they had a great time.
Who will get a paper questionnaire or Spanish-language materials?
Most areas — about three of every four households — will receive an invitation in the mail that asks them to respond online or by phone. The 2020 Mail Contact Strategies map shows which tracts will receive different options or an invitation in Spanish as well as English.
Some households will receive a paper questionnaire along with their initial invitation. These 25% are those less likely to respond online, per the Census Bureau’s analysis of self-response rates to the American Community Survey, rates of internet subscriptions and share of population over age 65. In our area, this is one tract in Lincolnshire (see below). Note: these packets (“Internet Choice”) will go in the mail on March 13.
Some households will receive their invitation letter in both English and Spanish, Specifically: tracts where 20% or more of households have at least one person age 15 or older who speaks Spanish and doesn’t speak English “very well.” In our area, some tracts in neighboring Wheeling and Prospect Heights fall into this category (details below).
Paper forms eventually will be mailed to all households that have not responded April 8–16.
Tract 8645.21 will receive a paper questionnaire with their first invitation. This tract is located immediately south of the Vernon Area Public Library. This tract includes Sedgebrook as well as the multi-family homes of Waterbury Place and around Apple Hill Park, Camberley Club and Rivershire Condominiums.
Nearby, tracts 8024.04, 8025.04, 8025.06, 8025.05, and 8026.09 in neighboring Wheeling and Prospect Heights are designated “Internet First, Bilingual.” They will receive mail in both English and Spanish. The invite will direct them to go online to respond. They will not receive a paper questionnaire up front. Note: 8025.05, and 8026.09 are two of the hardest to count tracts in the country — falling in the bottom 20% of response rates nationwide in 2010.
Hiring for the census is the largest workforce ramp-up in our country outside of going to war.
Starting in January, the US Census Bureau will hire 500,000 folks to work in their local communities — the community they know best — to encourage their friends and neighbors to participate in the count.
The hours are flexible. They pay is surprisingly good. And the work is so important. Because if your community or your state fails to count everyone, you'll lose your fair share of representation and resources for the next 10 years.
Looking to host a census job recruiting event? The contacts we have for the local recruiting offices in Lake and McHenry counties are:
Cecil Cross, Jr., Recruiting Assistant
John Ornelas, Recruiter
Chicago Regional Census Center
O: 312-579-1590 C: 773-844-7546
Or fill the need yourself in your community. Apply online at http://2020census.gov/jobs