Every ten years, the U.S. Census Bureau works to count everyone in the United States, including everyone in Minnesota. This year, the counting process, or census, will kick off in March. The accuracy of the population count impacts representation and funding and provides important information for community planning. Learn more and find out what to expect.
The census determines how many representatives each state gets in Congress. The data is also used to determine district boundaries for federal, state and local offices. In Minnesota, organizers are focused on getting an accurate count because our state is at risk of losing a seat in Congress. If our state’s population is undercounted, our state will be underrepresented.
The census determines how funding from the federal government is distributed. Even one missed person could mean losing $28,000 in funding. This includes funding and supports available to schools. Ensuring every family, including every student, is counted helps ensure we receive appropriate levels of funding.
Census data also helps our community plan services like transportation, schools, hospitals, senior centers, emergency services and other critical support services for our community. This same data is also used to help plan for where to locate new businesses and where and how to recruit employees for jobs.
Timeline and actions
The 2020 Census kicks off in March. To complete your part, you can submit your information online or via a paper form. Here’s a high-level timeline of what to expect:
- March 12-20: Invitations to participate online and paper mailings
- March 16-24: Reminder letters
- March 26-April 3: Reminder postcards
- April 8-16: Reminder letter and paper questionnaire
- April 20-27: Final reminder before Census workers go door-to-door
- May – summer: Census workers will be in neighborhoods to follow up with families that have not completed the questionnaire.
Content and confidentiality
Any personal, identifiable information you provide to the U.S. Census Bureau is confidential and protected under current law. The information is only used to produce statistics. Information will never be shared with another government agency.
Census organizers have also been asked about a citizenship question. There is not a citizenship question on the 2020 Census questionnaire.
More information and resources
- Learn more about the Census on the 2020 Census website.
- To access information about the Census in languages other than English, visit the Directory of Language Resources.
- You can also get answers to questions in real-time via text messaging. Text COUNT to MN 2020 (662020) or Text COUNT on What’s App to 651-333-2144. For Spanish, text CENSO. For Hmong, text SUABPEB. For Somali, text TIRI.