April 1, Johnson County Kansas’ Complete Count Committee launched Count Me In JoCo, a year-long awareness campaign to educate residents about the importance of being counted in the 2020 Census, and how to be counted. The next U.S. Census begins on April 1, 2020.
In addition to revealing the new campaign, Johnson County launched the web site CountMeInJoCo.org, where the public can learn about the census, read news releases, find links to other resources and download campaign marketing materials. Organizers will add content to the site in the coming months.
In October 2018, Johnson County became the first county in Kansas to proclaim its partnership with the U.S. Census Bureau for the 2020 Census. At that time, local stakeholders including county and city governments, chambers of commerce, school districts and non-profit organizations joined Johnson County’s Complete Count Committee to help educate the community on the necessity of participating in the census.
Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution mandates a census take place every 10 years. The data collected determines a state’s number of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and determines how billions of dollars in federal funds are dispersed to local communities.
“For every household that doesn’t get counted, we lose $39,000 over a ten year period, that could have been used for maintaining roads, funding for Medicare and other important federal funding uses,” says Alan E. Organ, M.D., PhD, Census Bureau Partnership Specialist.
Over the coming months the Count Me in JoCo campaign will educate county residents on the importance of participating in the census and about the various ways to be counted. For the first time, the census will be available to take completely online. This will help reduce in-person follow up visits to non-responding households. The public is invited to use CountMeInJoCo.org and the hashtag #CountMeInJoCo on social media to join the conversation and learn about the census.