The 2020 Census is Here

New Yorkers are encouraged to fill out the census at or call 1-844-330-2020 now

New York City households that complete the census now can avoid a knock on their door during the door-to-door enumeration period this summer

In the absence of clarity from the federal government regarding an extension of, or changes to, the 2020 Census given the spread of COVID-19, NYC Census 2020 revamps mobilization strategies

Contact:, (585) 530-7484

NEW YORK - Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives J. Phillip Thompson, NYC Census 2020 Director Julie Menin, and leadership from across de Blasio Administration, along with City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and elected officials from across the city announced the launch of the 2020 Census, the first-ever census available online and via phone. 

In the absence of clarity from the federal government about how the U.S. Census Bureau will alter the administration of the 2020 Census given COVID-19, NYC Census 2020 will revamp its mobilization strategies, and continue to emphasize the critical importance of self-responding to the census, which is now easier than ever. New York City households that take just a few minutes self-respond now can avoid a knock on their door during the door-to-door enumeration period over the summer.

New Yorkers can fill out the census in any one of 13 languages by visiting or by calling 1-844-330-2020 for English and 12 other toll-free phone numbers below for each available language. 

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 more New Yorkers who fill out the census, the more money the city receives for schools, hospitals, 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.

“With the Census now online and translated in multiple languages, it’s easier than ever before to stand up and be counted,” said J. Phillip Thompson, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives. “We urge all New Yorkers to take a few minutes to answer just 10 easy questions and help our City get the resources and representation we deserve – there’s no better return on investment in our future.”

“The 2020 Census has just begun. Filling out the Census takes a few minutes, but it is vital for the well-being of our city. Our response rate will determine how much in federal dollars we receive for our schools, our hospitals, our infrastructure, and our housing. Counting every New Yorker is critical, and this is why the City Council, along with the mayor, designated $40 million to conduct census outreach in all of the city’s neighborhoods. The census has never been easier to respond to. For the first time, you can complete your census online, or by phone in multiple languages. I encourage New Yorkers to complete the confidential questionnaire and get counted,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson.

Public Advocate Jumaane D. Williams said, “As the 2020 Census launches, it’s vital to recognize the importance of everyone—especially hard to count communities—getting the representation and resources they deserve. Taking a few short minutes to participate in the census is critical toward that goal. I filled out my census form this morning, and I urge all New Yorkers to go online and get their households counted.”

“It couldn’t be easier this year to fill the census out,” said Julie Menin, Director of NYC Census 2020 and Executive Assistant Corporation Counsel, NYC Law Department. “And quite frankly, it couldn’t be more important. We have to remember that census funds are directly linked to healthcare and the services that New York City’s communities depend on. If you want to avoid a knock on your door, make sure to go online or call a toll-free number and complete the census today.”

“Every New Yorker – regardless of background, immigration status, age, or what language you speak–has the right to be included in this once-in-a-decade count as we raise our voices to fight for our fair share of federal funding and political representation,” said Bitta Mostofi, Commissioner of NYC Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs. “Beginning today, you can get counted right at home by completing the census online or over the phone with assistance in 13 languages, among other online resources available in over 59 languages. The census is safe, responses are completely confidential and protected, and there are NO questions about citizenship or immigration. Get counted today!”

“It only takes a few minutes to fill out the census online or over the phone, and your input could be the difference maker between New York receiving billions of federal dollars and maintaining Congressional representation, or not. I’m spending today educating New Yorkers about this important civic role we all must participate in, and I look forward to working together with the Mayor’s Office of the Census in the coming weeks and months to ensure we have a complete count,” said Council Member Carlina Rivera, Co-Chair of the City Council’s 2020 Census Task Force.

"CUNY is proud to help ensure that all New Yorkers stand up to be counted in Census 2020, regardless of citizenship or immigration status," said CUNY Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez. "Undercounting New Yorkers would have a profound effect, depriving New York of its rightful representation in Congress and denying us millions of dollars in critical federal support for public higher education, including funding for programs like Pell Grants and health care services. CUNY's presence in every borough, along with our campuses' deep well of expertise and inclusiveness, makes us uniquely suited to help ensure that everyone has a voice in Census 2020."

New York City has taken serious measures to ensure a complete and accurate count in the 2020 Census, which determines the city’s future for the next 10 years. In 2019, along with many partners, the City prevailed at the Supreme Court against the Trump Administration’s attempt to add a citizenship question to the census, an effort specifically designed to spread fear and depress participation. In addition, the de Blasio Administration and the City Council have together provided $40 million in funding to support the NYC Complete Count Campaign, which is housed at NYC Census 2020 and led by Director Julie Menin. 

Important Facts about the 2020 Census

  • The census is available online and by phone this year: and 1-844-330-2020. 
  • This year, New Yorkers will be able to complete the census form online in 12 languages in addition to English, and each of these languages will also have its own dedicated, unique phone number that speakers of these languages can call to receive direct assistance. In addition, the U.S. Census Bureau has published “explainer” guides in a total of 59 languages. For more information, please visit: The 2020 Census is administered through the following phone lines:











Haitian Creole 



Telephone Display Device (TDD) 

  • There are no questions related to immigration or citizenship on the 2020 Census.
  • The census contains only 10 questions, and none ask about employment, income, or for one’s Social Security number.
  • The census is for everyone, regardless of immigration or citizenship status or housing situation. New Yorkers living with friends, family members, roommates, other families, or even in unlawful housing units, can and should participate in the 2020 Census.
  • All responses to the census and any personal information held by the Census Bureau are protected by Title XIII of the United States code, which makes the sharing of any personal information by a Census Bureau employee a serious crime, punishable by up to five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.
  • By law, census information can only be used for statistical purposes, and cannot be used against an individual or family in any way. The Census Bureau cannot share any personal information with any government agencies, private individuals, or companies. This includes immigration enforcement, law enforcement, any other federal, state, or city agencies, and landlords.  

NYC Census 2020’s Responsive Organizing

  • As the NYC Census 2020 campaign responds to community health care needs and the ongoing need for personalized and effective outreach, organizing methods will increasingly use new methods of peer-to-peer messaging, including at-home text-a-thons, phone banks, and tele-town halls.
  • March 22 “Text Out the Count”: a citywide “text-a-thon” through which New Yorkers can use our peer-to-peer texting platform to digitally organize encouraging hundreds of thousands of their fellow New Yorkers to complete the census. Messages will include a direct link to the Census Bureau’s website.
  • Planning tele-and web-town halls through which New Yorkers can participate in organizing efforts remotely. It’s an opportunity to hear from leaders on the census and get trained on peer-to-peer training schools.

Using agency and partnership engagement and digital methods to get out the count 

NYC Census 2020’s tactical outreach includes email and social media engagement to create a higher impact response during the first-ever online census. Outreach methods include:

  • An email blast that will go out to 13,573 unique email addresses including Complete Count Fund awardees, CityWide partners, non-profit organizations, community boards, elected officials, houses of worship, private sector employers, advocacy organizations, and complete count committees.
  • On March 12, 350,000 City of New York employees received an email announcing that the census has officially started. This communication will reach all corners of City government and will provide New York City’s dedicated workforce with information about why the census is so important to the City's future. Most importantly, this email will provide City employees with the website and phone number they can use to complete the census. Ensuring that New York City’s hundreds of thousands of City employees complete the census is a critical step to ensuring a complete and accurate count.
  • social media toolkit, which will be shared with relevant partners, including elected officials and non-profit organizations. Engaged New Yorkers can join the conversation via the hashtag #GetCountedNYC and can use NYC Census 2020’s “Counted!” filter for their social media profile photos after they fill out the census.

Getting Out the Count: Citywide, Local, and Foreign-Language Advertising

The City has made an $8 million dollar commitment towards a multilingual advertising campaign to bolster the effectiveness of NYC Census 2020. At the heart of the campaign is the City’s $3 million investment in ethnic and community advertising, reflecting the need to reach historically undercounted populations. Advertising will take place in a minimum of 16 languages, including the top languages spoken by limited English proficiency New Yorkers.

Starting this week, New Yorkers will begin to see NYC Census 2020’s first advertising campaign in the subways, online, in print, and via radio.  Currently, radio ads are being broadcasted in English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, Russian, Haitian Creole, Urdu, Polish, and Hindi. Print and digital ads will run in over 16 languages over the coming weeks in languages as diverse as Wolof, Nepali, and Bangla.

The two campaigns, which are slated to run in transit, on digital platforms, and in print starting on March 16, can be viewed here [Example One] and [Example Two]. 

These ads emphasize that all New Yorkers need to and can fill out the census, regardless of age, immigration status, or housing accommodations. Additionally, the ads talk about various funds dictated by census responses, including money for schools, job training, roads, bridges, hospitals, housing, and more, highlighting that New York deserves 100% of the funds The City would qualify for if there is a complete count. 

Because of the pivotal role the census plays in determining each city’s and state’s rightful share of resources and representation, the census has at times over the course of history been subject to political manipulation, and the time leading up to the 2020 Census has been particularly rife with misinformation and disinformation about the census, both of which have generated fear around participation. NYC Census 2020’s campaign aims to communicate the census’ importance and that it is both easy and safe. Combating fear requires a clear and consistent statement of facts about the ease and safety of participation. 

Photo of parent and child with text Under 5 and Over 65
Photo of people sitting at tables with text Documented and Undocumented
Photo of family with text Live in NYC?
Photo of women with text Live in NYC?
Photo of kids with text For More Money for Schools, Fill Out The Census
Photo of works in a kitchen with text More Money for Job Training? Fill Out The Census
Photo of man with text You Deserve 100%
Photo of family with text We Derserve 100%

“It’s more important than ever this year for all New Yorkers to participate in the Census.  We have so much to gain, but if we don’t have a complete count, we have much to lose.  The only way we can be sure that we have enough state and federal funding for schools, healthcare, transportation, housing, hospitals and fair representation in Congress is for every New Yorker to fill out the Census questionnaire,” said Council Member Fernando Cabrera. “The good news is that it’s now easier than ever before.  The Census is available in multiple languages, and can be completed online, on the telephone and at public libraries.  Immigrants have nothing to fear because there are no questions about immigration or citizenship status and Census workers are prohibited by law from disclosing anyone’s information.  I’m encouraging everyone, no matter where they came from, to complete the Census.  Our future depends on it.”

"I urge all New Yorkers to fill out the 2020 Census," said Council Member Daniel Dromm. "It is important that everyone be counted. An accurate count means more federal dollars and representation for the millions of people who call NYC home.  Filling out the census is easy: it can be accessed in 13 different languages and can be filled out online or over the phone. Don't delay; billions of dollars that can be used to improve our hospitals, schools and mass transit system are at stake."

"In order to receive every dollar, our City deserves from the federal government for schools, hospitals, transportation and education every New York City resident needs to be counted in the 2020 Census," said Council Member Ben Kallos. "The process could not be any simpler and the stakes could not be higher as literally billions of dollars could be lost if we are undercounted. Thank you to Mayor de Blasio for his attention and effort getting this count done correctly and remember the census is available online and by phone this year."

“Thankfully, you can now fill out the Census without ever leaving the comforts of home,” said Council Member Peter Koo. “It is so important that the 2020 census shows an accurate reflection of New York City’s diversity so that our communities can receive the resources and funding they need to thrive and succeed.”

“Today’s launch of the 2020 Census online expands accessibility and accountability to every person, household, and community who need to complete the 2020 Census to ensure that New York City is accurately counted. For decades, we have been undercounted and underfunded - a disastrous cycle that has deprived our communities of much-needed resources such as new schools, healthcare institutions, infrastructure, and equal representation in every branch of government. Now more than ever, we need every New Yorker - documented or not - to complete the form to ensure that we send a clear message against xenophobia that we count, we are here to stay, and our voices will be heard,” said Council Member Farah N. Louis.

“You can expect Southeast Queens to represent in the 2020 census. We are working diligently on outreach efforts, and constituents are preparing to self-respond online and over the phone for a complete, accurate count,” said Council Member I. Daneek Miller. “The census is about representation and funding, and it’s more important than ever for folks to do their part and ensure that our communities receive the resources they’re entitled to.”

"With so much at stake, from child care and school programs to affordable housing and road maintenance, it's more critical now than perhaps ever before that the Census gets an accurate headcount,” said Council Member Francisco Moya. “Fortunately, it's also easier than ever before now that you can quickly and easily fill out the census online or by phone. My District Office is also open for anyone who would like to come in and complete their census questionnaire there. No matter who you are or what your immigration status is, you're a New Yorker and you count so make sure you get counted." 

"It is critically important that every New Yorker is counted in the 2020 Census. With the ability to fill the census out online, it is easy for all to participate--and we have to work to make sure all do,” said Council Member Keith Powers. I thank the Mayor, Speaker, and Census Director Menin for their commitment to a full count."

“The Census is a once in a decade opportunity for New Yorkers to make a meaningful impact in their communities. Participating in the U.S. Census remains vital to effective governing because it provides valuable information that helps us determine how to allocate resources and supportive programs across the country,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez. “Our main goal is to ensure that we count every single New Yorker, regardless of immigration status. During this time we are encouraging New Yorkers to fill out the Census online or via telephone. I will continue to work alongside Speaker Corey Johnson, my colleagues and community based organizations to ensure we use all available forms of communications to connect with New Yorkers.”

“I cannot stress enough how important this is to the future of Staten Island. Our responses to the 2020 Census will determine our share of funds for public education, affordable housing, roads, bridges, other infrastructure and more,” said Council Member Debi Rose. “In the 2010 Census, the North Shore of Staten Island had some of the lowest response rates in the city. We cannot and will not let that happen this year. Responding to these mailings is critical to the future of our neighborhoods.”

“The U.S. Census is one of the most important activities in civic life. By participating, each of us helps to make it as accurate as possible. The 2020 Census will provide data that is more important than ever – affecting electoral districts and political representation, and how hundreds of billions in federal funding, including for healthcare, are spent. I am urging every New Yorker to get counted,” said Council Member Helen Rosenthal.

“Every person counts, and New York must count every person. The task is great and tensions are high, but there is too much at stake. This is New York, and we will rise to the occasion,” said Assemblymember Mathylde Frontus.

“2020 Census data is used to distribute billions in federal aid to public schools, hospitals, infrastructure, public transit, housing and much more. It is also used to determine how many seats New York State will have in the House of Representatives for the next 10 years. This is why it is important for all New Yorkers to fill out the 2020 Census completely so that New York State is accurately counted,” said Assemblymember Joseph R. Lentol.

"With options to fill out the 2020 Census online or on the phone in 13 different languages, busy New Yorkers will have a trouble free way to participate in this year's Census," said Assemblymember David I. Weprin. “Having an accurate Census count is critical to ensuring that New York gets its fair share of federal funding and representation, and I urge my fellow New Yorkers to fill out their 2020 Census online or by phone today!"

"Beginning today, New Yorkers can fill out the 2020 Census and get counted –– for themselves and their community. The results of the 2020 Census will determine the share of federal funding our communities receive for schools, affordable housing, roads, hospitals, and more for the next decade. And it will determine the number of seats we have in Congress. I urge every New Yorker to stand up and get counted today –– and make sure your friends and families do too. I look forward to working with the City of New York and community partners to ensure a full and accurate count of the Bronx and Westchester," said State Senator Alessandra Biaggi.

"It's census time and an accurate count is vital in ensuring our communities get the services they need,” said State Senator Andrew Gounardes. Last time, southern Brooklyn had one of the lowest response rates in the country; It's our mission to reverse that and make sure every single person is counted.”

“As a former census District Manager, I understand the importance of a complete and accurate census count. Accurate reporting is vital for our communities in need,” said State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky. This year it is easier than ever to complete, and I assure everyone, regardless of immigration or citizen status, that it is completely safe. I urge my constituents and all New Yorkers to make sure you are counted, so we can secure the funding our communities deserve.”

“The 2020 Census is here, and for the first time, you can fill it out online or over the phone from the comfort of your home. As Chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee with oversight over Census funding, I’ve fought hard to ensure a fair and accurate count because I know how important it is for communities like the Bronx. Make sure you’re counted and fill out the form as soon as possible,” said Congressman José E. Serrano (NY-15). 

"The labor movement in New York City has been preparing for this day, and now the time has come to ensure a complete and accurate census of all New Yorkers.  Our affiliates have been actively engaged with their members to ensure their households and neighbors are counted, and as the largest labor council in the country, we are certain we can make a difference. Labor unions are a critical partner during these times, our culture of activism and engagement lends itself to assist in the largest peace-time mobilization to take place this decade.  We welcome our partnership with the U.S. Census Bureau, NYC Census2020, ABNY, and numerous community-based organizations and will continue to demonstrate our commitment to ensure the most accurate census to-date," says Vincent Alvarez, President of the New York City Central Labor Council.