What’s the Big Deal About the 2020 Census?

As long as you fill out your own form in the 2020 Census, why should you worry about whether others will be counted?

Because your community depends on every single person being counted.

It’s not just about whether your city reaches a certain size, or whether we have a certain number of congressional seats or how legislative districts are divided up. It’s also about funding for fundamental services that keep our communities strong.

As you drove to work, or ran your errands today, or even just logged onto the internet, the results of the Census were all around you.

Federal expenditure programs that use the Census to guide their distribution include (with the per-year total amount allocated to Arkansas in parentheses):

Highway Planning and Construction ($572 million)

Federal direct student loans ($664 million) and Pell grants ($254 million)

Medicare supplemental health insurance ($635 million)

Grants to school districts ($159 million)

The National School Lunch program ($135 million)

Federal transit dollars ($41 million)

Head Start ($93 million)

Foster care funding ($41 million)

Adoption assistance ($21 million)

Crime victim assistance ($21 million)

Capital funds to build new public housing ($17 million)

Community Development Block Grants ($16 million)

Special programs for the aging ($6 million)

That’s just a few of them. In Arkansas, the total adds up to $9.7 billion annually, or $3,300 per person counted in the 2010 Census. Over a 10-year period, that’s $33,000 per person we’d be missing out on if we don’t have a complete count.

So, make sure you’re counted by Census Day on April 1, 2020. But help us make sure every person is Arkansas is counted. Learn more and join the effort at Arkansas Counts: arcounts.org