As of last week, only 59 percent of Bayonne residents had gotten themselves counted in Census 2020 either online, by telephone, or with paper forms. We are behind the state census response rate of 67 percent. Let’s not stay behind the state average. In New Jersey as a whole, as of last week, census workers had counted people in 20 percent of our state’s housing units since August.
The Census Bureau has not announced how many people its workers have counted in Bayonne. We estimate that at least 20 percent of Bayonne’s households have not been counted yet. That could amount to 12,000 to 14,000 people who are not yet part of Bayonne’s census total.
Last week, a federal judge in California put a temporary hold on an important federal government decision that could have a major impact on Bayonne. The case involves the Trump Administration’s decision to stop counting people in Census 2020 on September 30 instead of October 31. It would be helpful to have another month to get everyone counted. A federal judge in California prevented the September shutdown of the census at least temporarily. The case will continue on September 17. To be on the safe side, we should act as though the census deadline remains September 30.
Numerous federal aid programs are based on the census. Millions of dollars are at stake for Bayonne. It makes a big difference whether Bayonne’s official population count includes another 12,000 to 14,000 people who have not been accounted for yet.
A few weeks ago, the Census Bureau sent out one last mailing to addresses that have not been counted yet. That mailing included a paper census form. If you would like to be counted with that paper form, please fill it out and mail it back today.
You can also go directly to the census website. You can be counted online by going to www.2020census.gov, then follow the directions.
If you would like to be counted by telephone, there are phone numbers for several languages. Here are census phone lines for some languages spoken in Bayonne: English, 844-330-2020; Spanish, 844-468-2020; Polish, 844-479-2020; Arabic, 844-416-2020; and Tagalog, 844-478-2020.
You could also be counted by census workers who are going around town through September 30, or maybe later, depending on the court decisions.
Stand up for Bayonne. The clock is ticking. It’s time to be counted. Please do it now! Thank you!