The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund issued the following statement on the results of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2010 Census Race and Hispanic Origin Alternative Questionnaire research.
“We are pleased that the U.S. Census Bureau is working to ensure that the nation’s decennial Census produces a full and accurate count of the Latino community and the country as a whole in 2020 by conducting research to improve the collection of race and Hispanic origin data.
“While this research is a step in the right direction, the results demonstrate a need for further testing of the strategies used to collect race and ethnicity information. The NALEO Educational Fund is particularly concerned that one critical component of this initial research – a questionnaire distribued by the Bureau – was provided only in English. Future research must fully include the perspectives of Latinos who are not yet English-proficient, including many immigrants, to ensure that the Bureau obtains an accurate understanding of how the entire Latino population views and answers these questions.
“In addition, we strongly agree with the Bureau’s recommendation that its future research must examine how to improve strategies to obtain accurate information on detailed Hispanic origin groups. Latinos in the United States are a diverse and complex community, and without these important data, we will not have a complete portrait of our nation’s second-largest population group.
“The 2010 Census was an important milestone for the Latino community, with the population reaching 50.5 million. As the Latino community continues to grow, it will be even more critical for the nation’s decennial Census to produce data that accurately reflects the racial and ethnic diversity that exists within this increasingly significant sector of the American population.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the Census Bureau on preparations for the 2020 census and efforts to ensure that the Latino community and country are able to benefit from the most reliable data possible.”