Many normal Get Out the Count methods have had to change drastically, as social distancing has become the norm. Given that the CDC, many states and localities are asking for organizations to limit the number of people at gatherings and many events are being canceled, you may want to consider alternatives for GOTC outreach in your communities. The following are a few suggestions for outreach:
- Remind the communities you serve that it has never been easier and more accessible to respond to the census online, over the phone, or by mail.
- Share the message that the census website – my2020Census.gov – is live and residents can fill out the form via phone in English and 12 non-English languages. Here is a guide to share on how to start that process.
- Consider phone banking, text bank, emails, and other strategies to encourage the Hard to Count communities you serve to participate in the census.
- Census Digital U offers on-demand digital training focused on effective GOTC practices like SMS, online advertising, integrating online/offline are covered at length, and featuring various digital organizing experts.
- See other resources like the State Voices Field Guide, the Community Connect Labs, Coronavirus Demands a Quantum Leap in Organizing.
- Assign a staff person or volunteer as your nonprofit’s census liaison
- Learn about the census – timeline, impact
- Discuss at a staff meeting
- Discuss at a board meeting
- Learn about the areas of your community that are traditionally undercounted
- Discuss opportunities with your current funders for grants to support get-out-the-count (GOTC) in your community
Raise Awareness about the Census
- Develop a plan for how those you serve will have access to
the census 2020 website to complete the form online or by phone
- Develop messages to connect the census to your work
- Promote census in e-communications
- Include at a conference or other convening
- Distribute awareness materials to target audiences, internal and external
- Host – or advertise someone else’s – training or online webinar
- Co-Sponsor a remote community event on the census
- Advertise U.S. Census Bureau job opportunities
- Contact your city and/or county about local complete count committees
- Raise awareness by going door-to-door to educate your community about the importance of the census
- Have clients complete pledge cards
March – July 2020
Get Out the Count
- Engage in Census Day on April 1 to encourage communities to be counted. Use these social media graphics from participating organizations to promote.
- Hold digital townhall meetings with trusted community leaders
- Follow-up with your clients that completed pledge cards
- Distribute GOTC materials to your target audiences, internal & external
- Conduct virtual census parties in your community
- Incorporate the census into all ongoing outreach, services, and advocacy
- Provide computers and phones for people to use when completing the census *This is only for organizations that require in-person attendance. Practice safe distancing at all times.