2020 Census Mail Contact Strategies Viewer

December 13, 2019

U.S. Census Bureau

The 2020 Census Mail Contact Strategies viewer was developed so that communities can plan for the mailings that their area will receive when self-response for the 2020 Census begins. Users can see the mail contact strategy in each Census Tract by clicking on a Census Tract. The Application Help icon in the toolbar provides more information to learn how to interact with this tool.

In the 2020 Census, about 95 percent of housing units will receive their census invitations in the mail. The U.S. Census Bureau will send up to five mailings, to encourage you to respond online, by mail, or by phone. Most areas of the country are likely to respond online, so most housing units will first receive a letter asking you to go online to complete the census questionnaire (these Internet First areas are shown in purple on the map). Areas that are less likely to respond online will receive a paper questionnaire along with their first invitation, and this will include information about how to respond online or by phone (these Internet Choice areas are shown in green). Some areas will receive invitations in bilingual Spanish and English (darker shades), while most areas will receive invitations in English (lighter shades).

Census tracts will receive bilingual Spanish and English mailings if 20 percent or more of the households are recognized as needing "Spanish Assistance"—defined as at least one person aged 15 or older who speaks Spanish and does not speak English "very well". This was determined using 2013–2017 American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year estimates, and is the same criteria used to send bilingual questionnaires in the 2010 Census.

Census tracts will receive a paper questionnaire in the first mailing if the area is expected to have lower internet usage and thus would be more likely to benefit from an earlier paper questionnaire. Tracts are assigned to Internet Choice if they have lower self-response rates to the American Community Survey, and have either: low internet response, higher population of people age 65 or more, or low internet subscribership.

Every household that hasn't already responded will receive reminders and will eventually receive a paper questionnaire.

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