Rowan County hits 50% Census response rate

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 1, 2020

By Liz Moomey

SALISBURY — Rowan County has reached a 50% self-response rate to the 2020 Census, and the U.S. Census Bureau wants to increase the responses during the “Virtual Weekend of Empowerment” Friday through Sunday.

As of Thursday, Rowan County had a self-response rate of 50.9%, with 44.8% submitted through the internet. North Carolina has a self-response rate of 49.7%, and the national response rate is 54.6%. The final 2010 self-response rate for the county was 65.9%. Rowan County ranks 26th in the state for response rate.

The state’s response rate goal for the 2020 Census is 82%, which would be higher than Rowan’s rate once Census workers began roaming the community in 2010. The final 2010 rate was 73%.

The U.S. Census Bureau will start a social media campaign to #AvoidTheKnock, which asks people to respond to the 2020 Census before workers are asked to visit residences to decrease the amount of in-person interactions during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Due to the pandemic, the 2020 Census response deadline has been moved from July 31 to Oct. 31. The counts will be delivered to the president by April 30, 2021 and redistricting data will be delivered to the state no later than July 31, 2021.

Under the adjusted 2020 Census operational plan, field activities would resume after June 1, as area census offices begin returning to full staff capacity. In-person activities, including enumeration, office work and processing activities will incorporate the most current guidance from health authorities.

The Census Bureau temporarily suspended 2020 Census field data collection activities in March.

Census takers were to follow up with non-response households on May 13-July 31, but interviews will now be held Aug. 11-Oct. 31.

April 1 was the day census takers count homeless people who live under bridges, in parks and in all-night businesses, but it was postponed. The U.S. Census Bureau has not yet determined a new date.

Group quarters began responding on April 2, but the schedule was extended to Sept. 3.

The 2020 Census will ask:

  • How many people are living or staying at your home on April 1.
  • Whether the home is owned or rented.
  • About the sex of each person in your home.
  • About the age of each person in your home.
  • About the race of each person in your home.
  • About whether a person in your home is of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin.
  • About the relationship of each person in your home.

To respond to the 2020 Census, visit

Each person who responds to the 2020 Census helps their community secure its fair share of more $675 billion dollars in federal funding for roads, schools, health care services and other programs.