How to Cross-Promote Census Participation with an Existing Event
The Census Bureau made two significant announcements in July-that enumerators would begin going door-to-door on August 11 and that the timeline to take the census has been cut short from October 31 to September 30. As such, it is more important now than ever for counties to use every opportunity to promote census participation. Aside from social media, one of the easiest ways to promote the census is to include it with an existing event planned for August or September.
Events to Consider:
Due to the short timeline and the limitations on the size of public gatherings that are being implemented due to safety concerns, there may not be as many events planned as usual for this time of year. However, there are a series of events that ACCG has found to be happening across the state in both rural and urban communities. Examples of these events are provided below. As you consider which of these events can include census promotions, make sure your county follows the CDC and state safety guidelines and requirements for COVID 19.
- Back-to-School: These events, which have participation from both private and public organizations, provide book bags and school supplies during the month in August. These events may be pick-up or drive-by.
- Masks Giveaways: Counties are regularly providing masks and hand sanitizer through giveaways to the community to offset the spread of COVID 19. These events are scheduled periodically as supplies are made available.
- Food Distributions: Counties have partnered with food banks and food distributors to distribute food to those in need this summer and will continue through the fall. Most food distributions are being held on a monthly basis.
- Blood Drives: Monthly blood drives are held throughout the state and are generally coordinated with nonprofit organizations such as the Red Cross, area hospitals, local health departments, etc.
Actions to Take:
Now they you have identified an event that can also be used for census promotions, you need to make sure that the actions you are taking during that event to promote the census are geared toward participation and not just general awareness.
- Ask a representative from the Census Bureau to come to your event. They have promotional items and can help with census forms.
- Include an area with a hotspot and a laptop or tablet that can be used for people to take the census.
- Include flyers or postcards that provide information on where and how to take the census
- If you have a drive by event, consider how you may be able to encourage people waiting in their cars to take the census on their phones while they are waiting, such as posting large signs with the 2020census.gov website and a message to take while they wait
For more ideas on census promotions, go to http://www.accg.org/2020_census.php.