The 2020 Census officially kicked off on March 12 and, if you haven’t already, you will be receiving your questionnaires in the mail. Once the invitation arrives, you should respond for your home in one of three ways: online, by phone, or by mail. The census shapes many different aspects of your community. Everyone is counted. And for the first time, you can choose how you’d like to respond, all from the comfort of your own home! Unfortunately, due to the Borough’s precautionary meaures as it pertains to COVID-19, our Census Kiosks at the Fort Lee Public Library and the Senior Center will be temporarily closed for assistance but you can always find answers to your questions at https://2020census.gov/ or https://nj.gov/state/census.shtml.
Respond today. Your Response Matters. Your Privacy Matters. Vital for Your Community. Shape Your Future.
HIGHLIGHTED TOPIC: SENIORS IN NEW JERSEY (Week of Monday, May 11, 2020)
It’s important to be educated on the effect the #2020Census has on our lives in Fort Lee. This week, New Jersey Secretary of State Tahesha Way explains how filling out the #2020Census will affect senior citizens in our state. During #OlderAmericansMonth, it is crucial that 100% of our 65+ community is counted for the next decade. Census data helps determine where more than $45 billion in annual federal funding goes in NJ so having an accurate count of our aging population and where their needs are is important.
By completing the Census, we help accurately count that growing senior population, and ensure federal funding for seniors and the programs and services they rely on for the next decade. Programs that rely on federal funding determined by Census data include:
Medicaid and Medicare
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP - food stamps) and Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP)
Older Americans Act
Enhanced Mobility of Seniors & People with Disabilities
Supportive Housing for the Elderly
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Adult Activities
Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) – job-training and employment program
Senior Corps volunteer program
Census data also informs community planning – including funds for new hospitals, long-term care facilities and senior centers, as well as funding to maintain and update them to better serve the senior population. The 2020 Census will provide the most up-to-date count of the Baby Boomer generation, now estimated at about 73 million. Born after World War II (1946-1964), the oldest Baby Boomers will turn 74 next year. When the last Census was taken in 2010, the oldest had not even turned 65.
Fort Lee prides itself on our diverse community, and it’s more important than ever to encourage our residents to participate in the Census so that we can have an accurate representation of our government based on our population numbers. This week, make sure to call a senior you love and check in on them. Remind them of the importance of filling out the Census!
Partners are critical to the success of a complete and accurate count in 2020. Do you know why the 2020 Census matters? Do you know how participating can help your community? Learn more here.
What is a census and why is it important?
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.
HOW THE CENSUS BENEFITS YOUR COMMUNITY
Federal funds, grants and support to states, counties and communities are based on population totals and breakdowns by sex, age, race and other factors. Your community benefits the most when the census counts everyone. People in your community use census data in all kinds of ways, such as these:
Residents use the census to support community initiatives involving legislation, quality-of-life and consumer advocacy.
Businesses use Census Bureau data to decide where to build factories, offices and stores, and these create jobs.
Local government officials use the census to ensure public safety and plan new schools and hospitals.
Real estate developers and city planners use the census to plan new homes and improve neighborhoods.
This year, counting an increasingly diverse and growing population is a massive undertaking. It requires years of planning and the support of thousands of people.
Ultimately, the success of the census depends on everyone’s participation. The Census Bureau depends on cross-sector collaborations with organizations and individuals to get people to participate.
The 2020 Census is important for you and your community, and you can help.
Learn more about New Jersey State Census, click here, or to participate, click here. To apply as a Census taker, please click here.