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2020 Census

Libraries are essential, trusted partners in achieving a complete count in the 2020 Census. Review links and resources below for more information on the census and why libraries will play a vital role in the effort to achieve an accurate count.


 

The U.S. Constitution requires a count every 10 years of every person living in the United States and for the first time, the Census Bureau will be encouraging residents to complete the census questionnaire online. By providing public access to computers and the internet, information and education about the census, as well as public space for census staff and other organizations providing census education, libraries will play an essential role in ensuring all residents understand, and are able to complete the census questionnaire. An accurate count is incredibly important to ensuring state and federal funding is appropriately allocated. This will directly affect libraries as State aid to Libraries is determined by service population as well as federal funding sources including LSTA and IMLS grant funds. Data from the census determines representation in Congress and the Electoral College and is the basis for drawing districts for federal, state, and local offices. It is also used by researchers, businesses, organizations and the government to study trends and plan for the future.

Learn more

Resources

The American Library Association (ALA) has a wealth of resources available to help libraries prepare for the census. Visit the ALA 2020 Census Page

Cents and Census-ability: A Guide to the 2020 Census and Michigan Libraries

Atkin, Evette; Hamlin, Joseph; Membiela, Clare; Webb, Kathy. Presentation “Cents and Census-ability: A Guide to the 2020 Census and Michigan Libraries” (2019 MLA Annual Conference) presentation slides: Cents and Census-ability: A Guide to the 2020 Census and Michigan Libraries