The 2020 Census ended Thursday, and Alabama ranked 35th in the nation in self-responses to the census, but through census-takers’ efforts, the state had an overall response rate of 99.9 percent.
Of that 99.9 percent total responses, 63.5 percent were self-responses, slightly above the state’s 62.5 percent of Alabamians who self-responded to the 2010 census, according to the state’s census website. Door-to-door census taking made up the remainder of the state’s responses.
The count is critical in preventing the state from losing a Congressional representative, and federal funding established by the population count, and Alabama’s 99.9 overall response rate was a remarkable finish for a state that in October was dead last in the nation in its response rate.
“Over the past several months, Alabamians have come together during these challenging times to complete their 2020 Census, heeding our messages about how vital this count would be to shaping the future of our state,” Ivey said in a statement. “We’re hopeful that the spirit of our citizens in this effort will translate into good news for Alabama down the road.”
Shelby County had the highest self-response rate, at 77.8 percent, followed by Madison County at 76 percent and Autauga County at 71.7 percent. Wilcox County recorded the lowest self-response rate at 38 percent. The U.S. Census Bureau is set to release statewide population figures on Dec. 31.
“Though this year has been challenging for everyone, Alabama Counts! is tremendously pleased that we fulfilled our goal of maximum participation among Alabama households in the 2020 Census,” said Kenneth Boswell, chairman of Alabama Counts and director of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs, in a statement. “Alabama Counts! was a group effort of hundreds of people from organizations, governments and businesses throughout the state, and we thank them as well as the census workers for being key to the state reaching such a high participation level.”