Late Thursday, Northern California U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh issued a preliminary injunction that pushes the 2020 census deadline to October 31.
The decision comes just before a September 30 deadline ordered by President Donald Trump over the summer. The census deadline has jumped around as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Prior to March, the Census Bureau originally planned to complete the census by the end of July.
According to The Associated Press, Koh said a shortened schedule could result in inaccuracies, which would affect federal funding distribution and political representation over the next decade. Information from the census dictates $1.5 trillion in federal spending and how many congressional seats each state gets.
“An inaccurate census will hurt Americans in both red states and blue states, preventing them from receiving hundreds of millions of dollars their states are due in federal programs for healthcare, roads, job training and education,” Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney said in a statement, commending Koh’s decision. As Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Maloney has continuously championed the extension of the census deadline.
In July, Trump issued an order to “excl[ude] illegal aliens” from the census, but New York judges blocked the action.
The law requires you participate in the census, but the Census Bureau is also required by law to protect your answers.
If you have further concerns, you can learn more about the 2020 Census from the Council of Mexican Federations in North America or the National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.