It’s in The Constitution: Justice Stephen Breyer Partners with NYC Census 2020 and the Interfaith Census 2020 Count Coalition to Remind New Yorkers to Complete the 2020 Census

Member of Nation’s Highest Court Appeals Directly to New Yorkers to Bolster Foundation of Nation’s Democracy in New Public Service Announcement

NEW YORK -- NYC Census 2020 and the Interfaith Census 2020 Count Coalition released a public service announcement (PSA) today featuring U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, who appeals directly to the city hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic to complete the 2020 Census, which will unlock billions in funding for New York City, including for healthcare, for the next 10 years. 

In the PSA, a rarity for a sitting member of the Court, Justice Breyer reminds New Yorkers that the census is not only mandated by the U.S. Constitution, but that it also determines whether all states, including New York, receive their fair share of representation in Congress and hundreds of billions in resources for education, housing, transportation, healthcare, and more.

“New York has been going through a very difficult time with coronavirus - just terrible,” Justice Breyer said in the PSA. “The amount of healthcare aid, hospital aid, emergency aid, and school aid, for New York and every other state depends upon the answers to your questionnaires. The information you provide will be completely private. Please help yourself, your friends, your neighbors, and your state by answering the 10 questions on the census.”

“That Justice Breyer, a sitting member of the highest court in the land, is helping to spread the word about the 2020 Census in New York City underscores just how critically important it is to our future,” said Julie Menin, Director of NYC Census 2020 and Executive Assistant Corporation Counsel at the NYC Law Department. “As we continue to see the impact of COVID-19 on our economy, healthcare system, schools, transportation systems, and more, to have Justice Breyer remind all of us of how the census determines our access to the representation and resources that are rightfully ours makes clear that every single New Yorker must participate in the census, even when we face such unprecedented challenges.” 

“Interfaith Census 2020 Count Coalition is proud to partner with NYC Census 2020 on this PSA illustrating how vital it is for New Yorkers to fill out the 2020 Census,” said Reverend Dr. Chloe Breyer, Executive Director, The Interfaith Center of New York. “The COVID-19 crisis has exposed the importance of adequately funded hospitals and schools and census numbers will determine that funding for the next ten years. By reaching across faith lines to include the extraordinary diversity of New York City’s religious leaders and their communities, The Interfaith Center of New York and our partners are demonstrating that every New Yorker counts.”

“These are far from normal times - not business as usual. The Census’ impact on how well and quickly New York recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic makes it urgent that we all are counted, said Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York. “Participating in Census 2020 is an important part of being a good neighbor.”

“With current times, it has now become even more essential to participate in the census. Additional resources will be allocated accordingly into the communities according to population. It is clear NYC is the epicenter of this pandemic, we need to make sure now more than ever, that everyone is counted so the correct resources are appropriately allocated,” said Mohammad Razvi, Executive Director of the Council of Peoples Organization. “COPO continues to encourage its food pantry and health insurance recipients on a weekly basis to complete their census, to help us continue to support the community.”

New York City communities that have traditionally been undercounted in the census are also among the communities that are hardest hit by Covid-19,” said Jennifer Jones Austin, CEO and Executive Director of FPWA. “Justice Breyer’s video makes clear why it’s more important than ever that our city achieves a complete Census 2020 count.  In times of crisis, the federal funds that flow to communities are determined by the census. That’s why every community has to make sure it’s counted.” 

“UJA Federation NY is immensely grateful for all of our NYC Census 2020 partners as well as our partners in the interfaith coalition. UJA shares the common goal of ensuring the well-being of all New Yorkers, particularly the most vulnerable. Any undercount could cost our city millions of dollars in funding, including critical funding for hospitals, public health institutions and the human services sector,” said Eric S. Goldstein, CEO of UJA-Federation of NY. In these uncertain times, filling out the census is more important than ever and we thank U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer for lending his voice to this critical issue.”

NYC Census 2020 has released several PSAs from celebrities and other high-profile figures, including Lin-Manuel Miranda and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, as well as performer Cardi B, in order to get out the census count. The PSAs have emphasized how the census is safe, easy to fill out, and vital for New Yorkers to make their voices heard and their communities counted.

Given the spread of COVID-19, the NYC Census 2020 campaign is focused on encouraging New Yorkers to self-respond to the census now. If New Yorkers take a few minutes to self-respond now from the safety and security of their own homes, they will avoid a knock on their door during the door-to-door enumeration period over the summer.

The census is now more accessible than ever, and it can be completed without leaving the home or coming into contact with any other person. All New Yorkers can complete the census by visiting or by calling 1-844-330-22020. 

The census determines whether New York City receives its fair share of hundreds of billions distributed by the federal government every year for important programs and services. The census also leads to direct investments in New York City's health care system. For example, census data determines allocations for funding for CHIP and hospitals. What's more, it's how public health officials get the foundational data that public health experts use to plan for and manage situations like COVID-19. 

The more New Yorkers who fill out the census, the more money the city receives for schools, health care, transportation, job training, and so much more. The census also determines each state's fair share of representation in Congress, as well as how local, state, and federal legislative district lines are drawn, meaning the power of New York City's voice in Washington, D.C., and Albany is also based on the census.

New Yorkers can fill out the census at or via 15 different phone lines:























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Telephone Display Device (TDD) 


About NYC Census 2020

NYC Census 2020 is a first-of-its-kind organizing initiative established by Mayor de Blasio in January 2019 to ensure a complete and accurate count of all New Yorkers in the 2020 Census. The $40 million program is built on four pillars: (1) a $19 million community-based awards program, The New York City Complete Count Fund, empowering 157 community-based organizations to engage historically undercounted communities around the 2020 Census; (2) an in-house "Get Out the Count" field campaign supported by the smart use of cutting-edge data and organizing technology, and a volunteer organizing program to promote a complete count in each of the city’s 245 neighborhoods; (3) an innovative, multilingual, tailored messaging and marketing campaign, including a $3 million commitment to investing in community and ethnic media to reach every New York City community; as well as (4) an in-depth Agency and Partnerships engagement plan that seeks to leverage the power of the City's 350,000-strong workforce and the city's major institutions, including libraries, hospitals, faith-based communities, cultural institutions, higher educational institutions, and more, to communicate with New Yorkers about the critical importance of census participation. Through close partnerships with trusted leaders and organizations across the five boroughs, this unprecedented campaign represents the largest municipal investment in census organizing nationwide and will build an enduring structure that empowers New Yorkers to remain civically engaged.

About Interfaith Census 2020 Count Coalition

The Interfaith Census 2020 Count Coalition is a diverse collection of faith leaders and faith-based organizations across New York City that seek to decrease fear, shatter apathy, and inspire hope to ensure a better future for all New Yorkers through a complete count in the 2020 Census. Members of the steering committee include The Interfaith Center of New York, Catholic Charities of New York, Council of Peoples Organization (COPO), FPWA, and UJA-Federation of New York.