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DNC Releases Text Resolution on Ethnic Data Collection in 2010

posted on: Dec 13, 2007

Resolution Urging More Specific Ethnic Identification Choices in the 2010 Census

WHEREAS, the decennial census form has required respondents to choose from a narrow range or ethnic identification choices; and

WHEREAS, the decennial census short form has grouped ethnic histories together overbroadly, forcing people of Iranian, Greek, Polish, British, Russian, Mexican and similar backgrounds into the single category of “White” despite the substantial historical and cultural differences between peoples of Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, South American, Central American and Western European backgrounds; and

WHEREAS, the 2003 Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) guidelines require federal data be reported by five race categories: (1) American Indian or Alaskan Native, (2) Asian, (3) Black or African American, (4) Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and (5) White, and one ethnicity: Hispanic Origin; and

WHEREAS, the census short form collects national or tribal origin beyond these OMB categories for all but the White and Black race groups; and

WHEREAS, the census long form, which historically included a question on ancestry to measure ethnic heritages not specified in the race/Hispanic origin question, is scheduled to be eliminated in 2010;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Democratic National Committee (DNC) supports developing the 2010 census so the form asks respondents to list their ethnic heritage or national origin as a necessary supplement to the limits of OMB racial and ethnic categories; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the DNC supports using 21st century technology to upgrade the 2010 national census form so all respondents can disclose multi-ethnic backgrounds that respect their heritages while providing an accurate snapshot of national demographics in 2010 and beyond.

Chris Stampolis, California

Steven K. Alari, California

Barbara Easterling, At-Large/Virginia

Mike Honda, DNC Vice Chair/California

Ben Jeffers, At-Large/Louisiana

Mary Long, Georgia

James Zogby, At-Large/District of Columbia