If we’re not counted, we don’t count.

Why should the LGBTQIA+ community participate in the 2020 Census?

Political Power and Representation

Census data is used to redraw congressional and state legislative districts and reapportion the seats in the federal House of Representatives. Undercounts in Census data can lead to inaccurate and skewed representation in the federal, state, and local governments that set policies that directly affect the health and well-being of LGBTQIA+ people.

Federal Funding:

The Census determines how about $675 billion in federal funds will be distributed among the states. In FY 2015, Massachusetts received roughly $16 billion in federal funding based on 2010 Census data. This money was used to fund MassHealth programs, grants for low-income schools, school lunch programs, housing vouchers, and the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, among other vital programs. These programs are especially important for LGBTQIA+ people, given the disproportionately high rates of poverty and homelessness and housing instability within our communities.

New Same-Sex Couple Response Options:

For the first time on the Census, “same-sex husband/wife/spouse” and “same-sex unmarried partner” will be included as relationship options, which will make it easier for same-sex couples to explicitly identify themselves and their relationship—and to be counted accurately. This will help provide vital statistics to advocates and policymakers who work on LGBTQIA+ issues.

March – April 2020

The Census Bureau mails materials to all households with information about how to complete the Census. Make sure to be checking your mail for these materials and complete the Census as early as possible! 

May – July 2020

The Census Bureau identifies households that have not yet responded and sends workers to visit these households in person. It’s still not too late to complete the Census and the online or phone options are still available for people to respond!

December 31, 2020

Deadline for the Census Bureau to report state population totals to the President for apportionment purposes.

Beginning in March 2020, you can
fill out your Census online here!

LGBTQIA+ Census Resources

Additional Resources

The following links have a ton of resources that are available in different languages.

Official 2020 Census Resources from census.gov

Action Network’s Pledge to Count