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Stand and be counted: U.S. Congress receives historic Caribbean census bill

Black Caribbean Literature (BCL)
Newspaper Article
Publication Date:
May 2009
Miami, FL
African American Research Center, Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject Term:
Caribbean area, United States, Blacks, Legislatures, Legislators, Bills, Censuses, Clarke, Yvette
The Clarke bill calls for all questionnaires "used in the taking of any decennial census of the U.S. population, to include a checkbox or other similar option so that respondents may indicate Caribbean extraction or descent". "In conducting the 2010 decennial census and every decennial census thereafter, the Secretary of Commerce shall include, in any questionnaire distributed or otherwise used for the purpose of determining the total population by states, a checkbox or other similar option by which respondents may indicate Caribbean extraction or descent", states the bill. [Felicia Persaud] said the Clarke bill gives the Caribbean community renewed impetus to ensure they lobby around this cause and most importantly, fill out and return the 2010 Census form, especially by writing in their country of origin under Question 8. The origin's category is not an ethnic category so this will not divide the black or Asian or any other ethnic group that may perceive this as a 'divide and rule' strategy, Persaud added.