Today, Thursday, October 15, is the Last Day to Fill Out 2020 Census Form


By Jim Murray | Business, Science, and Technology Department | Central Library 

 On Tuesday, October 13, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order upholding the Trump administration’s plan to put an immediate halt to counting residents for the 2020 Census. Today, Thursday, October 15 is now designated as the final day to respond to the Census.

This action reverses earlier lower court decisions that had extended the Census response date to October 31, 2020. Plaintiffs in the case had argued that an early ending to the Census would make for an incomplete and inaccurate count of the population. Justice Sonia Sotomayor echoed similar sentiments in her dissent that accompanied the court’s order. 

The administration’s argument for ceasing the counting process rested on the premise that decennial Census population data must be collected and processed in time to be delivered to the President by December 31 for the purpose of determining Congressional reapportionment. 

This abrupt ending to the 2020 Census has a harmful effect on the efforts of all cities to obtain an accurate count of their populations, but none more so than Birmingham. With only 55.3% of the city’s population having self-responded thus far, Birmingham lags way behind the response rate of the state of Alabama, 63.5%, and the United States, 66.8%. To fill out your Census form, click on this link from the BPL Website

The good news is that there are still a few hours remaining for our residents to respond. Online internet response is available until 5 a.m. Central time on Friday, October 16, 2020. The opportunity to respond by phone at (844) 330-2020 is available until 1 a.m. Central Time on Friday October 16, 2020. 

Mailed in paper responses must be postmarked by October 15, 2020. 

So, if you have not already done so, please take a few minutes to respond to the Census. It is vitally important that every Birmingham resident be counted in order to make sure that the city and state are both properly represented in Congress and are recipients of our fair share of federal funding.