2020 Census

The 2020 Census ended on October 16!

The decennial census determines New York's fair share of more than $650 billion of federal funds every year for critical programs and services, including public education, public housing, roads and bridges, social services, and much more. It also determines the number of representatives we have fighting for us in Congress.

How to Respond

Data collection for the 2020 Census has concluded. For more information, please visit 2020census.gov.

Sign up here to get updates by email or text message when the 2020 Census results are available.

Brooklyn Self-Response Rates

Only 59% of Brooklyn (Kings County) households responded to the 2020 Census, compared to the national average of 67% (as of October 17, 2020). Visit CUNY's Hard to Count map for up-to-date information. In 2010, only 57% of Brooklyn households responded to the Census, making it one of the hardest-to-count counties in the nation.

The Library's Plan

New York's public libraries are critical partners in the 2020 Census effforts, receiving more than $1.4 million in City dollars to connect with key at-risk demographics. Along with our partners, Brooklyn Public Library is working to ensure every Brooklyn resident, regardless of age, race or immigration status, is fairly and accurately counted in Census 2020.

  • All BPL service staff have been trained to direct the public to resources to complete their census forms.
  • Patrons can complete their census form online using designated public computers at a BPL branch. Those without a library card can print a free guest pass to access a computer.
  • To serve those who speak a language other than English, all staff are connected to language access tools, such as Language Line and Travis, a handheld translation device.
  • A team of BPL Census Navigators will provide additional customer service.
  • Navigators are bilingual and have access to translation devices which allow for real-time conversations in dozens of languages.
  • Responses to the 2020 Census are protected by law. The U.S. Census Bureau oversees data security of the online form. Census form data will be encrypted while at rest and in transit (after census responses are sent).
  • No personal data will be stored on any Library devices. In coordination with NYC Cybersecurity experts, all Library devices will have the latest browser software, anti-virus software and firewall solutions to protect against malicious software and spyware.
  • Library staff are trained to handle questions about census scams, patron privacy, digital safety and data protection.
  • BPL will join partners NYPL and Queens Public Library in a Census awareness and outreach campaign, including messaging on our website, social media, on public computers and digital self-check kiosks.
  • Census messaging will be incorporated in key library programs, such as storytimes, English conversation groups, older adult programming, computer classes, and more. Family storytime programs will have a census and "counting" themes. Adult Literacy programs and classes will include a 2020 Census lesson and time to complete the census form.
  • Census Navigators will host regular census "Office Hours" programming.
  • The Library will partner with local organizations to host 2020 Census community forums designed to teach key hard-to-count communities.
  • BPL will build awareness about the census in a variety of languages, tailored to neighborhood demographics.
  • Tools like Language Line and the handheld Travis translation device will allow staff to provide customer service in over 150 languages.
  • Library technology will allow patrons to input their answers to the online questionnaire in dozens of languages, and accessibly features will make online response possible for all patrons.


Congrats to the winners of the Library's Census Sweepstakes!

In order to qualify, an individual must have lived in NYC and have completed the census for their household.

The Library gave away $50 gift cards to the BPL SHOP. Winners were selected at random and notified in October.

The contest is now closed.


Census "Office Hours" Virtual Programs

Chat with a Census Navigator online for one-on-one support.

View schedule


Census Teletown Halls

The Library partners with neighborhood organizations to co-host virtual community forums, targeting hard-to-count constituents and providing safe spaces to discuss the value of participation in the 2020 Census.

View schedule


Get Involved

Volunteer to help with 2020 Census outreach efforts in your community.

Sign up here


Contact Us

Have more questions about how the Library is supporting the 2020 Census? Contact us.