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2010 CENSUS

QUESTIONS AND
ANSWERS
What does the 2010 Census How do I complete the form?
mean to me? The questionnaire asks only a few
Money to your community for the basic questions for each person in the
services you need. Because funding household, name, relationship, gen-
is distributed to cities and towns der, date of birth, age, race and
based on population, when you whether the respondent owns or rents
complete your Census question- their home. In areas where there are
naire you ensure that thousands of likely to be a large number of Spanish
your tax dollars are returned to speakers, the Census form will be
Phoenix in critical services for you bilingual in English and Spanish.
and your family. These services can
range from safety and health pro- How confidential is the
grams to parks and transportation information I provide on the
facilities – programs that improve Census form?
your life. Your answers alone can Completely confidential. Guaranteed.
mean the difference of thousands Personal Census information is not
of dollars to Phoenix over the next shared with any other agency or
10 years. Multiply that by your organization. There are no excep-
neighbors’ responses and that tions. In fact, Census workers can go
means millions in these tough points below the national average.
to jail for up to 5 years for revealing
financial times. A review after the Census showed
Census information.
that nearly 19,000 people were
How will I benefit? missed in the official count. Many
Why is completing the Census
These funds come back to Phoenix of those who were missed were
form so important?
and are used for services, including: minorities and low-income people
More than $400 billion in federal and most of them lived in the south
money is distributed each year and southwest portions of the city.
• Hospitals
based on Census population figures. The undercount cost the city about
• Schools
• Safe and clean parks If you aren’t counted, you and your $80 million over the past 10 years.
• Libraries community will lose valuable servic- This year, each person missed will
• Police and fire protection es. That’s why participation is impor- cost the city $400 a year. Miss a fam-
• Senior services tant and required by law. ily of four, and that’s a loss of $1,600
• Head Start programs a year for 10 years.
• Local bus services What happens if I don’t
• Neighborhood revitalization complete my 2010 Census form? How can I help?
• Streets Getting an accurate count of the peo- Phoenix is taking this effort very
• And much, much more. ple is so important that, if you don’t seriously. The mayor and City
return the questionnaire, a Census Council appointed a Complete Count
What do I need to do for the representative will contact you by Committee of volunteers whose
2010 Census? phone or visit your home as many as function is to promote and publicize
You’ll receive the Census question- six times seeking your answers. If the importance of responding to the
naire in March or April. Just fill out you still don’t respond, your neigh- Census. This committee uses trusted
the 10 questions in the form mailed bors may be asked about the people voices and local knowledge to help
to you. It’s easy and confidential. It residing in your home. raise community awareness and
should only take about 10 minutes to encourage residents to fill out the
complete. The 2010 Census question- How will Phoenix be impacted if Census form, especially those people
naire is one of the shortest and easi- everyone is not counted? who are difficult to reach. Phoenix’s
est since the nation’s first Census in In the 2000 Census, Phoenix had a goal is to improve its response rate to
1790. response rate of 63 percent, four the 2010 Census and that’s why we
are counting on members of our state, one of our key tasks is to reach the affect people with financial prob-
community to help. The business, out to the immigrant community to lems. Included are:
faith, minority and education help them understand that the infor- • Food stamps
communities are represented by mation provided in the Census is • Section 8 Housing and Choice
nearly 200 residents serving on the completely confidential and cannot Vouchers
Complete Count Committee. be shared with any other agency, • National School Lunch Program
including law enforcement or immi- • Head Start
What makes up the $400 that gration organizations. • State Children’s Insurance
Phoenix will get for each person Program
counted? • Women, Infants and Children
How will same sex couples be
It is a combination of state and fed- (WIC) Program
counted?
eral funds that are distributed based • Foster care
As society and laws are changing • Child care
on the number of people who live in
with respect to same-sex couples,
the city. Included are state shared
the Census Bureau is adapting to There’s been talk nationally by
revenues – sales taxes, income taxes
provide accurate measures of same- some groups of boycotting the
and other taxes – of $324. The sex couples and the same-sex mar-
remainding $79 comes from the fed- Census. Bad idea, right?
ried population. Counting married It is a terrible idea. It does nothing
eral government in the form of same-sex couples won’t require a to help those who boycott and the
grants for such things as community change to the Census form itself. cities and states in which they live. If
development, human services, hous- The difference will be in how the Census shows fewer residents, it
ing, transit and public safety. Census data are reported. For will mean fewer resources for the
this Census, the Department of communities over the next 10 years.
Why does the federal government Commerce has clarified how the Participation in the Census is
consider the Census an Census Bureau can report the grow- required by law and ignoring the law
important civil rights issue? ing number of same-sex marriages is a poor way to build influence with
An accurate Census directly affects in the United States. Same-sex cou- lawmakers and other policymakers.
the nation’s ability to ensure equal ples may select boxes for the gen-
representation and equal access to ders of people living in a household In addition to the allocation of
important government resources for and their self-reported relationships funds to states and cities and the
all American, and therefore is as husband, wife or unmarried part- realignment of Congressional,
regarded as one of the most signifi- ner. In 2012, the Census Bureau will state legislature and city council
cant civil rights issues facing the begin to release reports based on districts, how else are Census
country today. Those who are not data used?
the 2010 Census data, including one
counted in Phoenix will seriously States use the data to distribute funds
focusing on how same-sex couples
impact the city by denying it valu- to cities and towns as well as non-
report their relationships.
able funding to help support services profit organizations. Businesses use it
such as health care, education and to decide where to make job-creating
Are people with disabilities investments. Cities – Phoenix includ-
job training. impacted? ed – use it to make planning decisions
People with disabilities rely on many and to help decide where to locate
Is the Census for U.S. citizens programs whose funding is directly job training centers, provide services
only? affected by the Census data. The fed- for the elderly and build roads. And
No! Everyone living in the United eral government uses Census infor- local school districts use it to help
States is to be counted in the Census mation to guide the annual distribu- determine where new schools should
regardless of their immigration sta- tion of about $15 billion in services be built.
tus. In fact, the Census form does to disabled persons. Among the serv-
not ask about immigration status. ices are housing, transportation,
Census statistics are used to figure health care and employment and job
out what kind of services each com- training assistance.
munity needs, including schools,
hospitals, health care clinics and Will the Census help people who Published by the City of Phoenix
jobs. The information gathered by are out of work and having Public Information Office
602-262-7176
the Census is used to determine financial difficulties? phoenix.gov
which communities have enough People who are struggling financial-
people who speak languages other ly have a huge stake in taking part in FOR MORE INFORMATION
than English so as to require servic- the Census. Census data are used to ABOUT THE CENSUS VISIT
phoenix.gov/census2010
es in other languages. As a border fund numerous important services