By: David M. Higgins II, Publisher
LEONARDTOWN, MD – The St. Mary’s County Department of Aging & Human Services is proud to support the 2020 Census by offering call- in assistance to the community. Anyone seeking help completing their 2020 Census should contact Jenny Beyer, MAP Coordinator, at 301-475-4200, ext. 71057.
Also known as the Population and Housing Census, the Decennial U.S. Census is designed to count every resident in the United States. It is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution and takes place every 10 years. The data collected by the decennial census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and is also used to distribute hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funds to local communities.
The numbers from the 2020 census will help determine how — and where — billions of dollars in federal funding get spent each year for the next decade. Many government programs that help older adults receive at least part of their money through formulas based on the census count.
Whether you’re older yourself or you have loved ones who are older, it’s critical to make sure everyone in every household gets counted.
Medicare is one of the most well-known federal programs for older Americans that relies on census data to help determine funding or the eligibility of people to participate. Here are five smaller ones:
1. Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP)
2. Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP)
3. Senior Corps
4. Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities
5. Supportive Housing for the Elderly
The census tells us who we are and where we are going as a nation, and helps our communities determine where to build everything from schools to supermarkets, and from homes to hospitals. It helps the government decide how to distribute funds and assistance to states and localities. It is also used to draw the lines of legislative districts and reapportion the seats each State holds in Congress.
If you need closer-to-home reasons for completing your census form, the Census Bureau suggests that you consider the following:
- Census numbers help communities work out strategies to deal with traffic congestion or overcrowded schools. Nonprofit organizations use census numbers to estimate the number of potential volunteers in communities across the nation.
- Many 911 emergency systems are based on maps developed for the last census. Census information helps health providers predict the spread of diseases through communities with children or elderly people. And when disasters hit, the census tells rescuers how many people will need their help.
- Census numbers help industry reduce financial risk and locate potential markets. This means that businesses can determine the marketability of potential products.
For more information about the 2020 Census and the importance of your participation, visit https://2020census.gov.