Local households can expect to get invitations to respond to the 2020 census this week or next.

Invitations will arrive in the mail. People can answer census questions online at www.2020census.gov — using a computer, tablet or smartphone — or by phone as soon as they get their invitation with their unique census ID.

Some households will get a paper questionnaire along with the invitation. Those who do can choose to fill it out and mail it back or answer the questions online instead.

The official date of the census is April 1. Those who reply sooner should answer based on who is expected to live in their household as of that date.

“In 2020, we need every Californian to be counted,” Secretary of State Alex Padilla said in a statement Thursday. “Your responses to the census will impact your family and your community’s access to services for the next decade. Funding for public health, public safety, education, and infrastructure depend on everyone in California — from the youngest to the oldest — being counted.”

The census questionnaire is available in 13 languages online and by phone, and people can get help in even more languages.

Reminders will be mailed out later this month and in April. In May, the U.S. Census Bureau will send census takers to knock on the doors of homes where no one has responded yet.

Census workers will also visit shelters, soup kitchens and tent encampments March 30-April 1 to make sure that people who are homeless are counted.

More information is online at www.2020census.gov, or call 844-330-2020.

Contact the Tracy Press at tpnews@tracypress.com or 835-3030.

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