With the countdown to the closure of the 2020 US Census, Duke officials are strongly encouraging participation in the effort from all members of the Duke community.
“Getting an accurate count of how many people are living in North Carolina will help determine future funding for everything from schools to infrastructure,” said Christopher Simmons, Duke associate vice president for government relations.
Why is the census important? At stake is appropriate political representation for the next decade, as well as an appropriate share of government resources for schools, roads and other essential infrastructure. After the 2010 census, North Carolina gained a 13th congressional representative. In 2020, the state is in competition to gain a 14th one, but only if state residents are counted in the census.
“In 2010, Durham County had a response rate of nearly 68 percent,” Simmons said. “Currently, the county is below a 60 percent response rate - - that won’t get us an accurate count and, in turn, the resources we will need in this next decade.”
Deadline: The deadline was extended because of the pandemic, but it is now approaching. The census will end counting residents on Sept. 30.
Go Online: The easiest and quickest way to respond is to go online and fill out census electronically.
Students: How students get counted depends on where they lived on March 1, 2020. Students who lived in campus housing – including 301 Swift, do not need to complete a census questionnaire, nor do their parents, as they were automatically included in student-directory data Duke reported to the Census Bureau.
Undergraduate and graduate/professional students who lived off campus as of March 1, 2020, were not be included in Duke’s report and should complete a census questionnaire based on their place of residence on March 1.