How are individuals experiencing homelessness counted?

As part of the GQ operation, the Census Bureau has developed special enumeration procedures to count people experiencing homelessness at service locations and pre-identified outdoor locations. The SBE operation is specifically designed to approach people using service facilities because the homeless may be missed during the traditional enumeration of housing units and GQs. These service locations and outdoor locations include the following:

  • Shelters (SH)
  • Soup Kitchens (SK)
  • Regularly Scheduled Mobile Food Vans (RSMFV)
  • Targeted Non-Sheltered Outdoor Locations (TNSOL)

For the 2020 Census, the Service-Based Enumeration operation will be conducted in March 2020. Service providers for SH, SK, and RSMFV will be given the flexibility for their facility to be enumerated on any one of these three days March 30, March 31, or April 1, during the enumeration period. TNSOLs will be enumerated April 1, 2020. The results from the SBE operation do not provide a count of the population experiencing homelessness or a count of the population who use those services at any geographic level. More information is available here.

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1. Will the Census ask if I am a US Citizen?
2. Are my answers safe and confidential?
3. Is the Census accessible?
4. What will the Census form look like?
5. How are individuals experiencing homelessness counted?
6. If I am living here temporarily, what do I do?
7. What information will the census NOT ask for?
8. Will this impact me or my family if people are undocumented or wanted by law enforcement?