The following is a cross-post from the U.S. Census Bureau
Between August 4 and October 18, you may begin to notice census takers in your neighborhood. This is a normal part of the 2020 Census preparation and data collection process. Census field representatives will also continue to collect information for the American Community Survey (ACS) and other ongoing surveys.
Why Does the Census Bureau Do This?
You might see census takers in your neighborhood for a few different reasons:
- They are verifying addresses in preparation for the census.
- They are collecting responses to the census or another survey.
- They are dropping off census materials.
- They are conducting quality checks on the census.
Census takers who verify addresses are called address canvassers. They help ensure an accurate and complete count by verifying address lists across a wide area of physical geography, housing structures, and residence types. Part of this effort involves census takers on the ground noting where houses, apartments, shelters, and other residences are located. Census takers will attempt to knock on every door in the neighborhood they are canvassing.
Explore where the Census Bureau plans to send address canvassers with this interactive map.
Census takers will begin visiting homes in 2020 to collect responses from those who did not respond online, by phone, or by mail. At the same time, there will be other surveys ongoing, such as the American Community Survey, so there will also be census field representatives visiting homes for other reasons as well.
How Can I Verify the Identity of a Census Worker?
If you are visited by someone from the U.S. Census Bureau, here are some tips to assure the validity of the field representative:
- Census takers must present an ID badge that includes a photograph of the field representative, a Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date.
- Note that census workers may be carrying a Census Bureau phone or a laptop as well as a bag with a Census Bureau logo.
- If you still have questions, call 800-923-8282 to speak with a local Census Bureau representative.
How Can I Avoid Being Visited at Home by Census Workers?
The best way to avoid being visited at home is to fill out your 2020 Census online, by phone, or by mail. Households will receive an invitation to begin participating in the census by April 1, 2020.
This is the first time ever that you'll be able to respond to the census online! Sign up for a reminder to take the 2020 Census.