Ask Congress to Include LGBT People in the US Census 2020
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Dear Ladies and Gentlemen of the United States Congress:
I run an organization called the "Transgender Rights Movement," and the main goal of this volunteer organization is to help transgender citizens to have access to affordable care and services throughout the nation.
Last fall, just following the US Census test for the upcoming 2020 Census, my organization directly contacted multiple individuals at the Census Bureau who are in charge of crafting the 2020 Census. To our surprise, the folks that we talked with in this department were very forthcoming and happy to begin a rapport on how we could include gender identity in the future as a part of our nationwide demographic count.
Many people have speculated on the number of transgender people in the United States, but up until now, there has been no nationwide count of our community. We realize that the Census, as well as collecting raw demographic and population data, is heavily relied upon at times to determine the concentrations of populations of groups of people living in certain areas, and helps to determine the allocation of social and other resources. This is also true for the rest of the LGB community, although they were not included in our initial ask regarding gender identity through the ACSO.
We as the LGBT community would like to respectfully request your consideration in this matter, following a recent statement by President Trump's administration that LGBT questions will not appear on the 2020 US Census. Part of our appeal to Congress is the result of the understanding that the US Census was already willing to include us as we negotiated the most careful and concise way to move forward doing so. Another part of our appeal is in response to your LGBT constituents nationwide who would like to be counted and recognized.
One easy fix to questions surrounding privacy is that including LGBT data on the Census does not have to be a mandatory item, and the community is not asking for such a consideration. We would like these questions to be included as voluntary data that can only give us more insight into the needs of our communities moving forward.
The time has come in our nation to allow those among us who may be the most in need of our support and services to be counted and seen.
Thank you very much for your time and consideration in this matter.
The LGBT Community of the United States
Thomas Page, Director, The Transgender Rights Movement
Gwendolyn Ann Smith; Columnist, @ebar News, Transgender Community Organizer
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