Bay State residents will soon receive an important piece of mail from the U.S. Census Bureau. The ten question survey should take no more than ten minutes to complete, but could have a lasting impact on your community.
“There is a lot riding on getting an accurate Census count this year,” said Deborah Banda, state director, AARP Massachusetts. “In particular, it is crucial that older Bay State residents participate to help elected leaders make a strong case to protect programs and services like Prescription Advantage, the state’s pharmacy assistance program; senior centers and councils on aging; and long-term care supports.”
Counting all residents
Conducted every ten years, the Census is the nation’s largest peacetime effort. All U.S. residents must be counted – both citizens and non citizens. Households are asked to provide key demographic information, including:
- whether a housing unit is rented or owned,
- the address of the residence, and
- the names, genders, ages and races of others living in the household.
What’s in it for you?
How can all this counting matter? Why should you respond? The 2010 Census is easy, safe and important, and can provide you with:
A voice. The Census determines how many seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives, especially important here in Massachusetts, where the population growth has slowed significantly. It also affects the redistricting of state legislatures, county and city councils and voting districts.
A stronger community. Billions of dollars in federal funding is allocated based on the Census. Federal, state and local policymakers use this data to:
- implement Social Security supplemental income and disability insurance programs;
- plan programs for seniors living alone in their homes;
- apply for grants to help seniors caring for their grandchildren; and
- create facilities and services for people with disabilities.
A job. A bright spot in the state’s otherwise dreary job front, the Census Bureau is hiring workers to help complete the count throughout the commonwealth this spring. Visit the Census Bureau website to apply.
Worried about your privacy? The 2010 Census form is completely confidential. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share your answers with anyone. Keep in mind, the Census will not ask for any personal information such as your Social Security number or bank account information.
For more information, visit the U.S. Census Bureau website.