Who Can Be Counted?

Oregon’s hard-to-count communities are the heart and soul of Oregon. Hard-to-count communities are often over-looked or invisiblized in state and local government and media but we know that we are the engine of our economy and the anchors of thriving neighborhoods. We are non-English speakers, immigrants, members of the  LGBTQIA 2Spirit community, rural ranchers and farmers, people of color including Black, Asian, Latinx, Middle Easterners and Native Americans as well as children under 5. We are also business owners, volunteers, students, artists, elected officials, caretakers, nature-lovers, workers and the future of Oregon. 

Ultimately, participating in the census is the right and responsibility for every Oregonian and it is an important way for our communities to show that We Count.

Pledge to make a difference.

How can the census help us?

Census information directly translates into critical services we depend on like:

 

  • Medicaid
  • Federal Direct Student Loans
  • SNAP food assistance
  • Highway planning and construction
  • Federal Pell Grant Program
  • Section 8 Housing Vouchers
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
  • Low Income Housing Loans
  • National School Lunch Program
  • Special Education Grants
  • Head Start
  • WIC (Women, Infants, and Children)
  • Foster Care
  • Health Care Centers
  • School Breakfast Program
  • Public and Indian Housing
  • Unemployment Insurance Administration
  • Adoption Assistance
  • Crime Victim Assistance
  • Grants for Prevention and Treatment of Substance Abuse
  • Water and Waste Disposal Systems for Rural Communities
  • Business and Industry Loans
  • Career and Technical Education Grants
  • Native American Employment and Training

#WeCountOregon is a community-led effort working to ensure that every Oregonian- especially those considered hard-to-count complete the 2020 Census. Hard-to-count communities include people of color, children under five, renters, immigrants, people with limited English proficiency, multiple-family homes, Native tribal and urban communities, disabled people, and LGBTQ individuals. It’s critical that ALL Oregonians are counted, remain visible, and participate in our democracy.

Why should I fill out the Census? What good will it do me or my community? Watch the video below to learn how the census helps us.

Please help #WeCountOregon advance a just and equitable count in the 2020 census.

Our Communities

#WeCountOregon is a community-led effort working to ensure that every Oregonian- especially those considered hard-to-count complete the 2020 Census. Hard-to-count communities include people of color, children under five, renters, immigrants, people with limited English proficiency, multiple-family homes, Native tribal and urban communities, disabled people, and LGBTQ individuals. It’s critical that ALL Oregonians are counted, remain visible, and participate in our democracy.

Read more about our specific communities.

Renters and Roommates

A single census form can come to a house where multiple people live, but not all the roommates get counted. Or a census form can be mailed to the property owner and the people renting the house never get the form and fill it out. Learn more about why the U.S. Census historically undercounts renters and roommates in Oregon and learn how you can ensure that every renter and roommate count in 2020. Check out the Families and Household page details or contact our partner Cat Action http://oregoncat.org/ for additional support. 

Undocumented people living in Oregon

1 out of every 9 Oregonians lives with a non-citizen. As you may recall, there was a proposed citizenship question for the census, but that was struck down by the Supreme Court. There will NOT be a citizenship question on the 2020 census. Additionally, the census will not ask for a social security number. No matter what your citizenship status is, if you are living in Oregon you count. For more information about non-citizens filling out the census including security and privacy concerns, see our Immigrants page.

Shared custody of children

The undercount of young children is a growing issue that matters to all Oregonians. The 2010 census missed an estimated 2 million children leaving millions of federal dollars on the table for Oregon’s children. Parents who share custody of a child are often confused about who counts the child as part of their household. The parent that has the child most counts them. If there is 50/50 custody (formal or informal) than the parent the child is with on April 1, 2020, is where the child is counted. Since the decennial census is conducted every 10 years, if a child is not counted, that’s 10 years of program funding Oregon misses out on, which is a huge chunk of their childhood. For more information about children and the census see our Families and Households page.

Non-traditional Families

The census form will have fields for everyone that lives at one location, regardless of their relation to each other or whether or not they are on the lease they should be counted. Your information is private, confidential and protected by Title 13, U.S. Code. The Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the United States Code. Census Bureau employees are sworn to protect confidentiality. People sworn to uphold Title 13 are legally required to maintain the confidentiality of your data. No matter if you are lesbian, gay, trans, queer, or a two-spirit indigenous couple living together, with or without children, everyone in the household should be counted. This applies to grandparents that have grandchildren living with them as well. No matter what your family makeup is, it’s important to complete your census form accurately. For more information visit our LGBTQIA 2Spirit page or Families and Households page.

Students

Even if you are living in Oregon temporarily as a college student or other vocational training, you should be counted. If you are living in Oregon as of April 1, 2020, then you count as being an Oregon resident and should fill out your census form accordingly. Federal Student Loans and other programs that benefit students are funded by census data, so by filling out the census, you are helping yourself and other students coming to live and learn in Oregon. For more information visit our Families and Households page.

Download our toolkit!

Need help or materials sharing #WeCountOregon Census info? Download our toolkit for talking about the Census and hard-to-count communities below.

Text the word “Oregon” to 33339.

Follow the link to our webpage and pledge to take the census AND join the movement.

We will send you text messages about upcoming events, debunking census misinformation, signing up for training and more. Don’t worry, we won’t over text you and you can stop receiving texts any time.

Questions? Contact us.