Washington, D.C. – The Arc released the following statement regarding the Trump Administration’s directive to exclude undocumented immigrants, including those with disabilities and their family members, in the 2020 Census count as it applies to Congressional representation:
“The Constitution is clear – the Census counts every person in our country. We know that there are many hard to count populations, including people with disabilities, that require extra effort to make sure they are counted. Excluding any group is harmful to our nation’s commitment to counting all persons, not just some, so that Congressional representation accurately reflects the population.
“The Census affects the lives of everyone in our country. For people with disabilities, the data is used to determine how much money state and local governments get for important programs like Medicaid, housing vouchers, food assistance, and education services. When there isn’t enough money, services and programs for people with disabilities will not be available to all who need them.
“The US Supreme Court has already ruled that the Administration could not add a question about citizenship status to the Census. They should not be allowed to make an end run around that ruling and remove people from the Census rolls, based on immigration status, when the Census count is transmitted to Congress. It is more critical than ever that people complete the Census and that everyone, including undocumented immigrants with disabilities and their family members, are counted. The Administration’s directive is harmful to achieving a fair and accurate Census and must be reversed,” said Peter Berns, CEO, The Arc.
The Arc advocates for and serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), including Down syndrome, autism, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, cerebral palsy and other diagnoses. The Arc has a network of over 600 chapters across the country promoting and protecting the human rights of people with IDD and actively supporting their full inclusion and participation in the community throughout their lifetimes and without regard to diagnosis.
Editor’s Note: The Arc is not an acronym; always refer to us as The Arc, not The ARC and never ARC. The Arc should be considered as a title or a phrase.