Common Cause Minnesota is ordinary Minnesotans working together to lift our voices and exercise the power of our votes. We’re strengthening the people’s voice in our democracy by putting people over parties, ensuring our elections are fair, clean, and focused on the priorities of constituents rather than distant donors or party bosses. Minnesota is better when everyone counts!

What is the Minnesota Census Mobilization Partnership?

The Minnesota Census Mobilization Partnership (the Partnership) is a cross-sector collaborative of organizations and individuals advocating for policies and resources to achieve the goal of fully inclusive, honest and accurate 2020 Census in Minnesota. Join the Partnership.

Minnesota is a step ahead of other states in preparing for a complete count in the 2020 Census. As reported by MPR and in an extended podcast interview, this is due in large part to the leadership of Minnesota Council of Foundations (MCF) and the Minnesota Census Mobilization Partnership, which Common Cause Minnesota co-chairs. The Associated Press reported on the state’s efforts to prepare for the Census, made possible by state funding secured last year through coordinated lobbying between MCF and Common Cause Minnesota.

Before 2020 Census forms appear in mailboxes, the Census Bureau needs residents’ addresses. If the bureau doesn’t know that a new subdivision or apartment building has sprung up, residents may go uncounted. That will mean less federal and state funding for the community. And, because the decennial census is the base for population estimates until the next census, a poor count in 2020 will affect your estimate for the next 10 years.

We’ve collaborated with the State Demographer’s Office and our Democracy Convening Partners to make sure Minnesota local governments are registered to help verify and update a database of all residential addresses through its Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) program.

Why does Minnesota participate in the Census?

States are mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution to participate in the census every 10 years. The data collected determines the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and the state House. The data also are used as an economic tool by industries assessing where to invest, scale back or explore expansion. Federal and state government agencies rely on Census results to distribute billions in federal funds to local communities.

What is the census information used for?

Census data guides the allocation of approximately $589 billion to local communities every year. Locally, it is used by private and public agencies, organizations, businesses, and institutions to help determine where to build new:

  • schools
  • roads
  • health care facilities/hospital emergency services
  • child-care and senior centers.
  • grocery/convenience/retail stores
  • open/close bus routes
  • recruit employees
  • locate new factories

The data also are used to shape congressional and state legislative districts. Learn how chambers of commerce and other organizations in our state use census data.

Why is it important to have a complete count?

A complete, accurate census count will ensure your community has the maximum visibility and voice in the coming decade.

What makes a group/area hard-to-count?

The Census Bureau calculates which areas are “hard-to-count” based on a number of factors that are common in areas with low response rates, such as:

1. Vacant units
2. Multi-family housing units
3. Renter-occupied units
4. Occupied units with more than 1.5 persons per room
5. Households that are not husband/wife families
6. Occupied units with no telephone service
7. Adults that are not high school graduates
8. People below poverty
9. Households with public assistance income
10. People unemployed
11. Linguistically isolated households
12. Occupied units where householder recently moved into unit

Use the interactive data elements here to explore which areas of Minnesota (or the nation) participated at higher or lower rates during the 2000 and 2010 censuses..

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