Posted by Suher Adi on May 30, 2019 in Blog

On May 30, AAI Executive Director Maya Berry released the following statement:

“This morning, news of the Hofeller memo brought to light what AAI and other civil rights groups feared from the moment Secretary Ross announced the addition of the citizenship question to the census: that it was politically motivated to suppress the count of various hard to count communities across the country.

Coupled with the abandonment of the Middle Eastern or North African (“MENA”) category, in which the Trump administration declined to obtain better Census data, AAI cannot ignore this administration’s agenda to politicize the Census.

Alongside our partners, we will continue to fight to maintain the integrity of the constitutionally mandated and historically non-partisan decennial census and ensure an accurate count of Arab Americans in 2020. As part of this fight, we filed an amicus brief on April 1st discussing the historic departures from procedure in the lead-up to the 2020 Census, and are working with the Yalla Count Me In campaign, a national campaign to ensure a fair and accurate count of Arab Americans in 2020.

AAI remains committed to a fair and accurate census, to free and fair elections, and to supporting our democracy.”


For more information on the Arab American Institute and our work on the decennial census, please see the following:

AAI Press Statements

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)