Between March 12 and 20, every household in the United States will receive an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census – a survey conducted each 10 years with the goal of counting every person residing in the United States. It will be possible to participate in the Census online, by mail, or by telephone. The Spahr Center wants to encourage all LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV to participate in this count. Our community’s future depends upon the Census in three important ways!
Democracy – the Census determines how many representatives each state has in Congress, and drives redistricting at the federal, state, and local level. California does not want to lose representatives who support LGBTQ+ and HIV needs. It is important to make sure that every LGBTQ+ person and person living with HIV is fully counted so that we can keep building political power.Funding – the Census drives over $675 billion in federal funding each year for programs and services that our community disproportionately needs. A complete count today means more services for our communities for the next ten years.Civil rights – Census data are used to enforce nondiscrimination protections, as well as other civil rights like access to voting. Especially as the Supreme Court and Congress weigh in on sexual orientation and gender identity protections in coming years, we need to make sure our community members respond to the Census so we can enforce the rights we’ve won.
We know that our community may be conflicted about whether to participate, but the Census will not include questions about sexual orientation or gender identity (though same-sex couples can choose to self-identify). All Census answers are confidential, protected by federal law and cannot be shared with any other federal or local agency or private individuals. Please be aware that Census 2020 will NOT ask about citizenship or immigration status. The Spahr Center will have more information and guidance about Census 2020 in coming weeks, including the availability of Census Assistance Centers where you can ask questions and complete the survey. We are available to answer any questions you may have at 415.886.8551 or [email protected] in the meantime, prepare to QUEER THE CENSUSstarting on April 1, 2020!
The 2020 Census is hiring! To learn more, go to https://2020census.gov/en/jobs.html The Spahr center is a Community Outreach Agency for Census 2020, funded by United Way of the Bay Area.