Policy Resource

Babies Need an Accurate Census

Every 10 years, babies count on us to get it right.

Many of the programs and services that help families give their babies a strong and healthy start in life are funded based on Census data. But in the last Census, about 2.2 million young children under 5 were missed, almost 10% of the total population in that age group. Research shows that families are not always aware that babies should be counted – but they should! Because the Census happens only once every ten years, the impacts of an undercount could last almost an entire childhood.

That’s why ZERO TO THREE is part of the team leading the Count All Kids Committee, a group of national, state and local children’s organizations and allies that have joined together to ensure our nation’s children are counted in the 2020 Census.

Please help spread the word! Use the resources on this page to learn about the Census and encourage families to participate. Together, we will make sure that we count all kids!

READ: Babies are Counting on an Accurate Census

Why is the Census Important for Babies and Families?

Babies Need an Accurate Census! You Can Help.

In this webinar, learn how the Census impacts babies and what you can do now to ensure that all babies get counted in 2020.

Counting Young Children in the 2020 Census

From the United States Census Bureau. (En español)


Ensuring a Full, Fair, and Accurate Census

Myra Jones Taylor, Chief Policy Officer at ZERO TO THREE, responds to a Supreme Court Decision on Citizenship.


Resources to Share with Families

Check out additional resources and support in a variety of languages from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Key Messages to Use When Sharing

Research shows that the messages below can be helpful in talking with families about the Census. Please use these messages as you share resources with families:

  • “You can fill out the Census on your own schedule and it only takes about 10 minutes to complete.”
  • “The 2020 Census helps decide how much money your community will get for schools, child care and early learning, health insurance and medical care, early intervention and home visiting programs, food assistance, foster care, housing assistance, and public transport.”
  • “Remember, when it comes to the Census, everyone counts. Count ALL kids living at your address. Don’t forget to include babies (born by April 1, 2020), nieces, nephews, grandchildren, foster children, and people not related to you (like a friend and his/her child).”
  • “The Census doesn’t just count people who are U.S. citizens. It counts every single person in the U.S. You should include everyone at your address. Completing the Census in 2020 is a confidential way of making sure you and your family count!
  • In fact, the 2020 Census will NOT ask if you are a U.S. citizen. You don’t need to worry about your own immigration status, or that of anyone living at your address, when you fill out the 2020 Census.
  • And, by law, the U.S. Census Bureau must keep all of your information confidential for 72 years. The Census isn’t allowed to share your information with anyone—including other government agencies.”