Trump administration omits LGBT people from 2020 Census

Census Bureau Submits Subjects for 2020 Census to Congress

Census Bureau Submits Subjects for 2020 Census to Congress

"The Subjects Planned for the 2020 Census and American Community Survey report released today inadvertently listed sexual orientation and gender identity as a proposed topic in the appendix", the bureau said in a statement.

A draft of subjects that were planned for the 2020 census, the next ten-yearly survey of the population, had included a question about a person's sexual orientation and gender identity.

WANG: In January, the Washington Post published what it said was a draft executive order directing the Census Bureau to quote, "include questions to determine us citizenship and immigration status", unquote, in the 2020 census.

If the government doesn't know how many LGBTQ people live in a community, how can it do its job to ensure we're getting fair and adequate access to the rights, protections and services we need?

Last year, various federal agencies urged the Census Bureau to include sexual orientation and gender in their data, saying it was crucial for law enforcement and public services.

There is also concern about census participation amongst Middle Eastern and North African communities in the US, who may have the opportunity to identify as "Middle Eastern or North African" on the 2020 Census if the new category for race and ethnicity is approved in time. Its proposal submitted to Congress this week did not have a separate category for LGBTQ. The census does count the number of "same-sex unmarried partners" but does not count LGBTQ people in the U.S. Since 2014, companies receiving large federal contracts have been required to show they have complied for at least three years with federal laws prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender stereotyping. The subjects represent the necessary balance between the need for data and the Census Bureau's commitment to reduce the time it takes to complete the form.

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U.S. Census Bureau Director John Thompson (center) along with Lloyd Potter (right), UTSA professor and appointed state demographer, appear at the Applied Demography Conference, which happens every two years in San Antonio on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017.

The bureau counts Americans according to race, gender and other characteristics. It's not surprising given Donald Trump's sordid history with women that this administration is allowing companies to hide sex discrimination - including sexual harassment.

That's an infuriating blow to be sure, and also not entirely all that surprising given the anti-LGBT slant of the current administration (the Vice President, after all, has always been a proponent of so-called religious freedom laws, according to The Advocate, which put the LGBTQ community at risk of legal discrimination).

Activists in the LGBT community and Democratic lawmakers have been pushing for the next Census to gather information on sexual orientation to get a better picture of the American people's family and sexual dynamics, the Washington Times reported.

Other federal tools, including the National Health Interview Survey and the Justice Department's National Crime Victimization Survey, do probe for sexual orientation, and the victimization survey even asks about gender identity as of 2016.

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