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ALA releases new Libraries' Guide to the 2020 Census

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Today, the American Library Association released the Libraries’ Guide to the 2020 Census, a new resource to prepare libraries for the decennial count of every person living in the United States.

The Guide contains practical information to assist library staff in addressing potential patron and community requests regarding the upcoming 2020 Census. The Guide includes:

  • basic information about the Census process;US Census 2020 logo
  • highlights of new components in the 2020 Census, such as the online response option;
  • frequently asked questions;
  • a timeline of key Census dates;
  • contact information and links to additional resources.

ALA teamed with the Georgetown Center on Poverty and Inequality to develop the Guide, with support from ALA’s 2020 Census Library Outreach and Education Task Force.

ALA plans to provide additional resources for library practitioners in the months leading up to Census Day on April 1, 2020. The Libraries’ Guide to the 2020 Census is available for free download at

Helping residents and others who use your library's Wi-Fi or public computers to complete their census survey online can benefit your community, schools, and county in the future, since every individual counted helps to maximize federal and state funding for municipal services. Assignment of House of Representatives seats, federal funding apportionment, and our own LSTA "Grants to States" award are all based on the decennial census. More information on the importance to your community can be found in this blog post from last July, and more information specific to Wisconsin can be found in this post from January to help you learn how to determine is a "Complete County" committee has been established in your community or county.

Adapted from an ALA press release by John DeBacher, Public Library Development 


For questions about this information, contact Michael Dennison (608) 264-6717

WI Libraries for Everyone

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