Every decade, the U.S. government conducts a count of the entire population. The U.S. census should count everyone, no matter a person’s housing status.

Yet people experiencing homelessness are usually undercounted, depriving them of fair political representation and access to vital resources.

In the months leading up to Census Day – April 1, 2020 – Chicago Coalition for the Homeless provided census education during outreach at shelters, drop-in centers, and schools, and at professional training sessions. CCH is among 42 Illinois organizations partnering with Forefront’s IL Count Me In 2020. We’re working together to reach hard-to-count communities.

Our message? People experiencing homelessness count, too!

Many people who experience homelessness live “doubled-up” in the homes of others, often in temporary and overcrowded conditions. Whether living on the street, in a shelter, or doubled-up, every homeless person should be counted in the census.

The U.S. Census Bureau invites most households to respond through the mail, but the process looks different for those without a home. CCH has updated its census fact sheet tailored specifically for people experiencing homelessness.

The fact sheet covers the basics: what the census is, when it’s happening, and why it matters. It outlines the steps a homeless person can take to make sure they’re counted, depending on where they are living.

Help make sure all Illinoisans are counted in the 2020 Census, no matter their housing status:

Questions about the census counting those who are homeless?

Contact Gloria Davis, CCH’s Census 2020 Project Manager, at gloria@chicagohomeless.org or Development Manager Erin Sindewald, at erin@chicagohomeless.org