Gov. Ivey kicks off 2020 census initiative

Updated: Apr. 4, 2019 at 3:48 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The Alabama Counts outreach initiative kicked off Thursday.

The initiative aims to reach maximum participation among Alabamians in the 2020 census. More than 200 mayors, county commissioners, legislators and other community leaders from across the state joined Gov. Kay Ivey for the launch.

The U.S. government’s 10-year census count will be in the spring of 2020, and Ivey is urging leaders to join her in raising awareness of the importance of the state’s performance in the census to the state’s future.

“We as Alabamians have a tremendous opportunity to positively affect the future of our state and our children by simply taking about five minutes to say ‘I Count’ and completing our census forms in 2020,” she said. “Our goal with Alabama Counts is maximum participation, and we are going to be working hard over the next year to attain that goal, so we can secure a brighter future for our communities.”

Ivey unveiled the Alabama Counts logo, introduced the state’s official 2020 census website, and named the state’s census theme of “I Count.” She was joined by members of the Alabama Counts 2020 Census Committee, Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs Director Kenneth Boswell and representatives from the U.S. Census Bureau for the event at the State Capitol.

Many Alabamians benefit from federal programs, and funding allocations are determined in part by census data. Ivey said completing a census form will help ensure that Alabama receives its fair share of funding.

The federal government also uses 2020 census data to allocate the nation’s congressional seats, and Ivey said many projections show Alabama is at risk of losing one of its seven congressional seats.

Alabama households will receive a letter from the U.S. Census Bureau with instructions on completing the census forms starting in mid-March 2020. The Census Bureau encourages an online response but will have a toll-free number for households to complete their information over the phone or request a traditional paper form (the bureau plans to mail paper forms to households in rural areas with potentially low internet access).

The information collected during the census is confidential and cannot be used against a person by any group or agency.

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