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Census 2020: Everyone Counts

Census 2020: Everyone Counts

Tim Smith
President
Oklahoma Association of
Electric Cooperatives

 

"When everyone counts, everyone wins.” This is the slogan for the Oklahoma 2020 U.S. census campaign, and it is spot on. The U.S. census is not only a civic duty, it’s the law. The Constitution mandates the United States to count its population every 10 years. The census—administered by the U.S. Census Bureau, a non-partisan government agency—counts every person living in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories. Below are three reasons why you should participate: 

1) The census is important. It provides a picture of the nation that helps determine where to build new schools, hospitals, and businesses; how federal funding is distributed; and how congressional seats are apportioned. It also helps to evaluate how communities have changed over time. The census count will provide funding and services we will live with for the next 10 years. Oklahoma communities stand to gain an estimated $1,675 per person, per year for the next 10 years in federal support for programs that use census data such as healthcare, parks and roads, education—and more. That is why it is vital that we get an accurate count and that everyone takes the time to participate. 

2) You and your community count. As an engaged community partner, your rural electric cooperative understands the importance of the U.S. census and encourages every co-op member to participate. We understand gathering this data is crucial to ensure our local communities continue to grow with proper development. 

3) It is fast, secure and efficient. For the first time, the U.S. census will be available online starting in March. The census can also be submitted via phone or mail and even in person, if needed. It will take an estimated 12 minutes to complete the census. By mid-April, a paper questionnaire will be mailed to every household that has not yet responded online or by phone. If necessary, participants can also respond in person beginning in mid-May. Strict federal law protects census responses. It is against the law for any Census Bureau employee to disclose or publish any census information that identifies an individual or business. 

Truly, when we participate, we all win. To make sure you and everyone you know is counted, visit www.2020census.govOKL Article End