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Census 2020 and the Library

An overview of how Montana libraries can help to support a complete count for Census 2020.

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Census 2020 and the Library

  1. 1. Census 2020 in the Library LET’S GET READY! MONTANA STATE LIBRARY - FALL, 2019
  2. 2. Today, you will be able to:  assist patrons to access the Census form  plan programs for promoting a complete count  articulate why a complete count is important to our state, your community & your library  explain the foundation for the Census in US law  address common concerns about the Census
  3. 3. 2 Questions for you – pair/share 1. What do you want to learn today? 2. How are you planning or already participating in promoting a complete count?
  4. 4. Who cares? United States Constitution – Section 1, Article 2
  5. 5. Who cares? Montana Census & Economic Information Center: 5 Trillion $$$ Nearly $2,000 per person per year
  6. 6. Who cares? We may reclaim the seat in the US House of Representatives that Montana lost in 1990
  7. 7. Small Group Discussions  What did you notice when you completed the sample form?  Concerns?  Observations?  Surprises?  Confusion?  What do you need before you and your library staff are comfortable directing a patron to the 2020 Census Form online?
  8. 8. Changes in 2020  Most households will complete the form online or by phone  Paper forms not mailed to everyone, just a postcard notice & a reminder postcard  Reduced funding for follow up enumerators  Fewer communities will have door-to-door census takers
  9. 9. Librarians role  Make public computers and WiFi available  Help patrons ACCESS the Census form  Refer patrons for help if they have questions about how to complete the form  Direct patrons to different language versions of the form  Provide programs that help inform your community and dispel myths
  10. 10. Concerns about data privacy  Title 13, US Code: data only for statistical use  Title 44, US Code: full Census data released to the National Archives only when it is 72 years old
  11. 11. Concerns of patrons  It takes too long  9 questions for primary respondent  7 follow-up questions for everyone else in the household  There’s no benefit  $2,000 per person in federal funding to Montana – infrastructure, health care, education…  Fair & accurate voting districts  Double our representation in the US House of Representatives  Don’t want to government to have any information about me  By law, residents are required to truthfully complete the census, but incomplete forms are counted
  12. 12. Timeline  NOW – addresses are being updated; census workers hired  March: postcards mailed to households  April 1st – Census Day  Through July 2020 – forms may continue to be submitted MSL photo CC0
  13. 13. Need to Know  Hard to Count Communities
  14. 14. Need to Know  Complete Count Committees
  15. 15. Be a Census Champion!  Keep informed & share information  Look for opportunities to promote a complete count in your library & community  Connect with your local Complete Count Committee(s) OpenClipArt-Vectors CC0
  16. 16. Your library, Your community  Dispel myths?  Promote participation?  Facilitate access to the Internet?  Reach historically undercounted populations:  Native Americans  Children  Persons not currently living in a traditional household  Other ideas?
  17. 17. Census Day at the Library Help us plan a statewide event! April 1st or some other date? What should MSL do? Good idea, bad idea?
  18. 18. Thoughts? Questions? Concerns? Tracy Cook Jo Flick