Local advocacy group El Pueblo joined a lawsuit last week challenging the Trump administration’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census.
The 2020 document will ask people living in the U.S. if they are citizens (for the first time since 1950). If some people avoid answering the question, the administration wants to use other government documents to fill in the blank.
“El Pueblo is deeply concerned about the potential under-count of Latinos in North Carolina and across the country with the inclusion of the citizenship question,” said El Pueblo Executive Director Angeline Echeverría. “Our hope is that, by participating in this lawsuit, we can ensure an equitable distribution of resources as a result of the 2020 Census.”
The lawsuit was filed by the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund (MALDEF), Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC) and the Maryland law office of Robert P. Newman. It alleges the Trump administration’s decision to add the citizenship question is motivated by racial animus.
It violates the Fifth Amendment, the suit states, because the Census question is intended to severely under-count Latinos, Asian Americans, immigrants and other populations, and dilute their political representation and federal funding to their communities.
“El Pueblo is proud to be joining with plaintiffs from across the country that represent diverse immigrant communities and communities of color that are standing up to the administration and refusing to let them leave us out,” Echeverría said.