Posted on July 03, 2019 in Press Releases


CONTACT: Tess Waggoner | (202) 429-9210 |

July 3, 2019


WASHINGTON, D.C.- Following news reports that the Department of Commerce has initiated the printing of 2020 Census forms without the citizenship question, which was the subject of a decision by the Supreme Court last week, Arab American Institute Executive Director Maya Berry issued the following statement: 


"This news marks a major victory for all advocates for a fair and accurate Census count and for our democracy. We are grateful for the oversight and accountability mechanisms our nation's systems afford us, which will permit us all to move forward with a clean and fair Census count. Families and communities should not feel intimidated from participation in the Census, a vital tool to determine the allocation of resources and how legislatures are apportioned. We can now affirmatively say that the Trump Administration has failed to hijack the Census for partisan gain.

We have been working for a fair and accurate count for decades, so for Arab Americans, census efforts are familiar terrain. While we regret the decision to abandon the Middle East North Africa (MENA) category by the Trump Administration, the details of which we are still fighting to uncover, we are undeterred in our longstanding efforts to ensure that everyone is counted. We are hard at work to ensure a fair and accurate count in 2020and the YallaCountMeIn campaign is ready to work with our national and local partners looking to help Get Out The Count for hard to count communities like Arab Americans.  

The Judicial branch ruled in favor of our democracy last week; now Congress must protect the Census from further attacks by the Trump Administration by employing the necessary oversight to secure the funding and operations for a successful decennial census."


AAI Press Statements

AAI Responds to Supreme Court Decision in Department of Commerce V. New York (June 27, 2019)

AAI Statement on Hofeller memo, decennial census (May 30, 2019)

AAI Statement on Supreme Court Oral Arguments on Census Citizenship Question (April 23, 2019)

On National Census Day of Action, AAI Launches “Yalla Count Me In” (April 1, 2019)

AAI Responds to Inclusion of an Untested Citizenship Question on the Decennial Census (March 27, 2018)

AAI Responds to Rejection of the "Middle Eastern or North African" Category from the 2020 Census (January 26, 2018)

AAI Joins 170 Rights Groups to Oppose DOJ's Attempt to Add Citizenship Question to 2020 Census (January 10, 2018)

AAI Resources

AAI's Census Information Center 

Arab American Demographics 

Issue Brief: Ensuring a Fair and Accurate Count in the 2020 Census (2019)

Issue Brief: 2020 Census: Reaching An Accurate Count (2018)

Blog: Yalla, Can We Count You In? (April 2019) 

Blog: Commerce Secretary Ross' Testimony to House Oversight Committee (March 2019)

Blog: It’s Not Just the Citizenship Question: How Trump is Playing Politics with the Census (March 2018)

Blog: A New MENA Category: The Reality and the Headlines (October 2016)

Blog: Making Sure Arab Americans Count: Adding a MENA Category to the Census (July 2015)