One of our favorite things about Black families is how many amazing ways we connect and take care of each other. We family with everybody we love— our kids and grandkids; our parents and siblings and their kids; our partners and friends; our play cousins and our real ones. We know we don’t have to share blood to matter to each other or live with each other. That’s important to remember when getting counted on the census.
When you or someone else in your household fills out the census, be sure to include everyone who lives there all or most of the time, anyone staying there who has no other usual home, and any visitors staying and sleeping there as of April 1st. Count them no matter how young or old they are, how they are or aren’t related to each other, whether they’re on the lease or not, and regardless of immigration or citizenship status. This is especially important to remember for those of us who live with blended families, with roommates or tenants, and with folks of any age who don’t have another permanent place to stay.
Here are some other things to know about who counts where you live:
- Newborn babies and young children count! One of the main reasons Black children ages 0-5 years old are undercounted at nearly twice the rate of white children is because they’re mistakenly left off of their home’s census forms. That means more crowded classrooms and less access to health care, childcare, and more. If we want better lives for Black children, we must make sure they’re counted on the census.
- If you share custody of your child(ren), they should be counted where they live and sleep most of the time. If there’s a 50/50 split, count them where they sleep on April 1st of this year.
- College students living on campus full-time will be counted there and shouldn’t be counted at their family’s home. College students who live off-campus or commute should be counted at home.
- If you have other questions about how to count people in special circumstances (like how to count folks living in a hotel or health care facility, or who have more than one home, or who live in transitory situations, you can learn more about it directly from the Census Bureau.
No matter who we are, who we love, where we were born, or who we live with, we all count. If you haven’t already been counted, make a plan to get counted ASAP, and be sure everyone who lives with you is included.
Take Action: One of the most important things you can do to help right now is to use YourVoice to affirm why you matter and why you’re getting counted on the census. Click here to record a short video sharing why you’re getting counted in the 2020 Census!
You can also help spread the word that everyone counts, including kids! Feel free to save & share the graphics below with your friends, family, and social networks.