Washington D.C.—Today, Ana Marie Argilagos, President and CEO of Hispanics in Philanthropy, issued the following statement responding to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to block the citizenship question, for now, in the upcoming 2020 Census:
“Hispanics in Philanthropy is pleased with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to block the citizenship question from the 2020 Census, for now. This is a win for democracy today, but the fight is far from over. The Supreme Court didn’t block the question for good, so we now call on the New York District Court to proceed with the removal of the citizenship question, so that we, as a country, can move forward toward a fair and accurate decennial census.
“Unfortunately, the deliberations on the question have already caused damage to public trust and perceptions. The feelings of intimidation, fear, and confusion around the question will continue to linger. In fact, earlier this month a U.S. District Court in Maryland ruled that there was enough evidence to reopen a case on whether or not the proposed census question violated the rights of people of color.
“An accurate census is critical to ensure that communities across the country have the ability to shape their voice and power and get their fair share of the more than $800 billion of federal funding for schools, hospitals, public transit, and social support systems.
“In 2010, more than a million young children under five were undercounted, including a high percentage of Latino children. The largest group of children currently living in poverty in the United States is Latino. These young children and their communities missed out on millions of dollars in state and federal funding they should have received after the 2010 Census, and the injection of the citizenship question into the 2020 Census may cause this undercount to be even worse.
“Now, more than ever, HIP’s network of foundations and grantees will work tirelessly to ensure that the power of the growing Latino community is not restricted by fear. HIP and our partners are committed to building and leveraging our resources to help mobilize communities toward full participation. Empowered by the high court’s decision, we will continue to work together—through our philanthropic networks and grantees—to ensure every person is counted.”
Sonia Melendez Reyes