Once a decade, America comes together to count every resident in the United States, creating national awareness of the importance of the census and its valuable statistics. The decennial census was first taken in 1790, as mandated by the Constitution. It counts our population and households, providing the basis for reapportioning congressional seats, redistricting, and distributing more than $675 billion in federal funds annually to support states, counties and communities’ vital programs — impacting housing, education, transportation, employment, health care and public policy.
The next census in 2020 will require counting an increasingly diverse and growing population of around 330 million people in more than 140 million housing units. To get an accurate count, the Census Bureau must build an accurate address list of every housing unit, maximize self-response to the census, and efficiently follow up with those who do not respond.
This operation implements methods to improve and refine the U.S. Census Bureau’s address list in advance of the 2020 Census. The Census Bureau needs the address and physical location of each living quarter in the United States and Puerto Rico to conduct and tabulate the census. An accurate list ensures that residents will be invited to participate in the census and that the census counts residents in the correct location.