SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Next year, every American household will get a Census form to fill out, but before that happens, nearly half a million households will receive something called the “Census Test.”
A lot of people think the Census test is fake, since the Census isn’t until next year, but WTOC found out the rest is real, and it’s a federal offense if you ignore it.
Census tests are in the mail. The Census Bureau says “approximately 480,000 housing unit addresses included in the test will help fine-tune the planning for the 2020 Census Nonresponse Follow-up operation.” That means the results will help determine how many census takers may be needed, how many people will respond, and how best to communicate with households that don’t respond. The documentation is blue for English speakers and green for Spanish speakers.
You have options on how to answer the Census test if you get one. The U.S. Census Bureau says, “Similar to the 2020 Census, those who receive the survey will be able to respond online, by phone, or by mail. Additionally, households will also be able to get help over the phone.”
All answers will remain private and the test will continue through the week of Aug. 12, 2019. A lot of people might throw the test away, but there are consequences if you ignore it. According to federal law, if you willfully ignore it, any adult over 18 can be fined $100, and if you respond with incorrect answers on purpose, you can be fined up to $500.