Secretary of State Tahesha Way, chair of the New Jersey Complete Count Commission, announced today that New Jersey has reached a self-response rate of 68.1 percent for the 2020 Census, surpassing the last three censuses in self-response: the 1990 Census self-response rate of 65 percent, the 2000 Census self-response rate of 68 percent and the 2010 Census self-response rate of 67.6 percent.

With a September 30 deadline fast approaching, there is limited time to boost the final response rate and ensure everyone is counted. New Jersey residents who have not yet completed the 2020 Census are encouraged to fill it out quickly, as time is running out.

“The Census is critical for New Jersey to prepare for a strong future, as this will determine federal funds as well as representation in Congress,” said Governor Murphy. “I thank everyone who has responded – whether it be online or working directly with a Census taker. If you haven’t completed the Census, make sure you’re counted today.”

“Our hard work over these last several months is paying off – thank you to our network of County and local governments, nonprofits, local complete count committees and New Jersey residents for stepping up to the plate during these unprecedented times by spreading the word about the Census and filling it out,” said Secretary Way. “I’m especially proud of New Jersey’s self-response rate in this difficult time, with the COVID-19 pandemic pushing many of our efforts online.

“As we approach the finish line we must push hard,” Secretary Way continued. “We need every New Jersey resident to fill out the Census today to ensure everyone’s voice is heard over the next decade.”

Data collected from this year’s Census will determine whether New Jersey receives more than an estimated $45 billion in annual federal funds. Many federally funded programs are informed by Census data, from emergency planning and response to investments in education, health care, infrastructure and economic development. Census data is also used to redraw legislative districts and determine the number of seats New Jersey has in the U.S. House of Representatives. Fair representation for all New Jersey residents requires a complete count of our diverse communities.

Census responses are safe and secure, as the U.S. Census Bureau is bound by federal law to keep Census responses confidential and use the data for statistics only. To increase the number of responses, Census in-person employees, or enumerators, are following up with households who have not yet completed the 2020 Census online, over the phone or through mail. Enumerators will carry a valid ID badge featuring their photograph, a U.S. Department of Commerce watermark and an expiration date.

The 2020 Census is open to all households to complete online at 2020CENSUS.GOV, over the phone by calling 844-330-2020 and by paper through the mail. Residents who do not have their unique 12-digit number, received on a Census invitation mailed to their home, can still complete the Census online at 2020CENSUS.GOV.

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