Timeline - 2020 Census

The decennial U.S. Census has been characterized as the largest peacetime mobilization. It's a complex exercise that involves 35 separate operations, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Timeline of high-level tasks

Year Date Activity

2018

March 31

2020 Census questions sent to Congress

April

Six regional census centers opened (LA for WA)

March-August

End-to-end census test in Providence County, RI

By end of year

Highest-level complete count committees launched

July-December

Small-scale recruiting for outreach & office positions

2019

January

Seattle Area Census Office opens

January-June

Large-scale recruiting for area census offices and address canvassing

Beginning in January

Census Bureau launches partnership activities

January-September

Additional complete count committees launch and develop strategies and work plans

July

Open additional area census offices in Everett, Olympia, Spokane, and Tacoma

August-October

Address canvassing

September-February 2020

Large-scale recruiting for the 2020 field operations

2020

January

Complete count committees begin community organization mobilization

January

2020 Census advertising campaign begins

March-early April

Complete count committees encouraging self-response

March 16-23

Mailing #1 sent to homes

March 20-27

Mailing #2 sent to non-respondents

March 30-April 6

Mailing #3 – a postcard – sent to non-respondents

March

Service-based enumeration begins (for transitory locations like RV parks and campgrounds, tent cities, marinas, hotels)

March

Group quarters enumeration begins (for those living in group quarters like dorms, nursing homes, etc. and for the homeless)

April 1

Census Day

Early April-Late July

Non-response follow-up (NRFU)

Early April-Late July

Complete count committees encouraging cooperation with enumerators

April 12-19

Mailing #4 – letter & paper questionnaire sent to those who have not yet responded

April 23-30

Mailing #5 – It’s not too late! postcard

December 31

Apportionment counts to the President

2021

March 31

Redistricting counts to the states

 

Looking for more detail?

Recruiting timeline

The Census Bureau will open area census offices in Seattle in January 2019 and in Spokane, Tacoma, Everett, and Olympia in July 2019. It will be constantly expanding the number of partnership specialists and eventually will roll out a large-scale recruitment for address canvassing, which begins in August 2019, and for 2020 field operations.

The best way to instill trust in the census process is to have individuals from the community working on field operations and the identification of occupied residences.

The broad timeline for recruitment is:

 

Year Time of year Recruiting/staffing activity

2018

Summer

Wave 1 ACO Management (approx. 10 per ACO)

Summer/Fall

Partnership Specialists (310)

Fall

ACO office staff, Recruiting Assistants (approx. 30 per ACO)

2019

Spring

Address Canvassing field staff (approx. 300 per ACO)

Spring

Wave 2 ACO Management (approx. 10 per ACO)

Fall

Non-Response Follow-Up field staff (approx. 500 per ACO)

See Census Bureau job postings and how to apply