Census Bureau will leave LGBT questions off 2020 survey

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The Census Bureau’s 2020 survey will not ask people about their sexual orientation or gender identity, against the wishes of LGBT rights groups.

Gay rights groups are now accusing the Trump administration of getting rid of the proposal which was supported by several government agencies during the Obama administration, including the departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Justice Department.

According to reports, the initial draft of the survey released Tuesday morning included asking respondents about their sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI), along with the typical gender, race, and ethnicity topics. But the final draft released late in the evening did not include the SOGI questions.

“The Census Bureau is really missing an opportunity to serve the federal agencies and the American people,” said Meghan Maury, director of the Criminal and Economic Justice Project at the National LGBTQ Task Force.

“[Federal agencies] can’t make the right choices about how to allocate those resources if they don’t have a sense of what the LGBTQ community looks like,” she added.

The Hill reports that the Human Rights Campaign filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the Commerce Department, asking what role the Trump administration played in the decision.

The Census Bureau can take years to research new topics and questions to ask on its surveys, which could be one reason it did not include SOGI questions on the upcoming cycle. But, Maury said she believes there is something bigger at play, claiming several other surveys that work with the Census Bureau have removed SOGI questions, as well.

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“This is part of a bigger pattern,” Maury said. “It seems like it would be pretty far outside the norm for three relatively independent agencies to make these decisions in the space of a month.”

John Thompson, who was appointed by President Obama in 2013 to head the Bureau, made a statement to Congress on Tuesday, saying, “Our goal is a complete and accurate census. In planning for the 2020 Census, the Census Bureau has focused on improving its address list by using imagery, finding ways to increase household self-response, leveraging resources inside and outside the government, and making it easier and more efficient for Census takers to complete their work.”

The left is blaming it all on the Trump administration:

An LGBTQ demographics expert has stated that gay rights activists are simply jumping to conclusions.

The Hill further reported:

“The Census has never included questions about sexual orientation and gender identity in its surveys. But the Bureau did include an option that allowed respondents to identify themselves as part of a same-sex relationship in the 2010 Census, and several other agencies ask about sexual orientation and gender identity in their own surveys, many of which were designed with the Census Bureau’s help.”

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