Take Action: Submit a comment opposing the addition of the Citizenship Question on the 2020 Census
[Public Comment Period Has Ended]
In March 2018, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, with the support of Jeff Sessions’ Department of Justice, announced that he had directed the Census Bureau to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census. Adding this question to the census form that goes to all households will discourage participation and threaten the accuracy of the count. Make no mistake about it – this is a blatant attempt to undermine the 2020 Census and the latest attack on the immigrant community by this administration. Recently released documents reveal that career staff at the Census Bureau warned the political leadership at the Commerce Department that the inclusion of a citizenship question would depress census response rates, increase costs, and diminish the quality of census data. The documents also reveal that the citizenship question was added to advance the agenda of operatives like Steve Bannon and Kris Kobach, the architects behind several anti-immigrant initiatives, such as SB 1070 and Special Registration.
Before the questions for the 2020 Census are final, they are open to a public opinion comment period, and comments are included in the official federal record. This is our chance to let Secretary Ross know that he needs to remove the citizenship question from the 2020 Census.
Our Goal: 100% participation by NY Counts 2020 members to submit public comments on the Citizenship Question from their organization
Large public comment campaigns have played a crucial role in challenging federal rules. In a case like Keystone XL, the “unprecedented” 2.5 million comments that the pipeline received became a handy justification for delaying the pipeline further — there were so many comments that, the state department said, they needed to be “studied more closely.”
Effective public comments should focus on your organizational connection to the citizenship question, and what specific expertise/insight organizations bring to the table. Brevity is key.
The period for submitting public comments ends at 11:59 pm on August 7th. Comments must be no longer than 5,000 characters (approx. 700-800 words).