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To be counted, here's what counts with the 2010 census
Census Bureau hopes shorter form, which should take 10 minutes to complete, will increase response rate
By Jeff Kunerth of The Orlando Sentinel - March 1, 2010
WHAT IS THE CENSUS?
The U.S. Census counts every resident in the United States, and is required by the Constitution to take place every 10 years.
The census numbers tell us who we are and what we need. The 2010 Census will help communities receive more than $400 billion in federal funds each year for things like hospitals, job training centers, schools, senior centers, bridges, tunnels and other public works projects, emergency services.
The data collected by the census also helps determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives. Currently Florida has 25 seats.
March 2010 – Census forms (a short 10 question form and prepaid envelop) are mailed or delivered to every household in America.
Information about the form can be found at http://2010.census.gov/2010census/how/about-the-form.php. Once you get your form in the mail, fill it out and mail it back in the postage-paid envelop provided.
If you did not receive a form:
• Call the Telephone Questionnaire Assistance center at 1-866-872-6868. (If you prefer a Spanish-speaking operator, then dial 1-866-928-2010). The lines will be open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. (your local time) seven days a week from February 25, 2010 through July 30, 2010. For the hearing-impaired, TDD 1-866-783-2010 (during the times noted above).
• Be Counted forms are census forms that are available at various community locations for use by people who either did not receive a form in the mail or whose information was not collected on any other form. Be Counted forms are available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and Russian. These forms and postage-paid envelopes can be picked up in various community locations and mailed back.
April 1, 2010 – National Census Day: Use this day as a point of reference for sending your completed forms back in the mail. Be sure to count and include every member of your household.
The Census Bureau does not send out any confirmations that your form was received.
Any request for census information from the Census Bureau will be clearly identified as coming from the U.S. Census Bureau and as OFFICIAL BUSINESS of the United States. It is a federal offense for anyone to pretend they represent the Census Bureau. Before your household receives a mailed form, a phone call or a visit from the Census Bureau, you will be given a few days notice with a letter from the Census Bureau Director.
April – July, 2010 – Census takers visit household that did not return a form by mail
If you don't send back your form, you may receive a visit from a census taker. If a census taker visits you, here's what you should do:
• First ask to see their ID. All census workers carry official government badges marked with just their name; they may also have a "U.S. Census Bureau" bag
• Note that the census taker will never ask to enter your home
• If you're still not certain about their identity, please call the Regional Census Center's to confirm they are employed by the Census Bureau
• Answer the census form questions for your entire household (you must be at least 15 years old to answer questions) so that the census taker can record the results for submission to the Census Bureau
Census takers visit local homes several times to capture resident information for the 2010 Census. If you prefer, you can schedule a visit with your census taker. Should the census taker come when you are away from your home, they will leave a contact number.
December, 2010 – By law, the Census Bureau delivers population information to the President for apportionment.
REGIONAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES
Recruiting period for the 2010 Census began in November, 2009. The majority of hiring will take place in the spring of 2010. Information about employment opportunities with the Census Bureau (Region IV) can be found at http://www.census.gov/roatl/www/emply.html More general information about employment such as testing requirements and FAQs, can be found at http://2010.census.gov/2010censusjobs/