The following is a message from Jan Meisels Allen, Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee:
A bill has been introduced in the United States Senate which would prohibit the recently added question on citizenship to be placed on the 2020 US Census. The bill, S 2580, authored by Senator Menendez (D-NJ) has 15 co-sponsors-all Democrats. The title of the bill is “Every Person Counts Act”. The bill specifically proposes in Section 141(a) of title 13 of the United States Code, by inserting,” as necessary, except that the Secretary may not include any question or otherwise elicit any information regarding United States citizenship or immigration status”.
To read the bill see: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2580/text.
The US Constitution has required a decennial census since 1790. Earlier this year, at the e request of the Justice Department, the Secretary of Commerce added a question on citizenship based on their assumption it will “help enforce” the Voting Rights Act . Between 1820 and 1950 the US Census asked a question about citizenship. Since the 1950 census no citizenship question has been included in the decennial census. The question will be the same as the one asked in the annual American Community Survey. Since 1790 the US census has counted both citizens and non-citizens This was added late in the sole testing stage so it will probably will not be included in the Rhode Island end-to-end survey.
There are several states which have filed suit against the Administration over the new question. For back ground information see the IAJGS Records Access Alert .
To access the previous postings on the US 2020 Census see the IAJGS Records Access Alert archives at: http://lists.iajgs.org/mailman/private/records-access-alerts. You must be registered to access the archives. To register for the IAJGS Records Access Alert go to: http://lists.iajgs.org/mailman/listinfo/records-access-alerts You will receive an email response that you have to reply to or the subscription will not be finalized. It is required to include your organization affiliation (genealogy organization, etc.)