Census Race Change For Hispanics Sparks Criticism

Census Race Change For Hispanics Sparks Criticism

The Huffington Post

Tony Castro

Some Latino civil rights groups are questioning the U.S. Census consideration of designating Hispanics a race of their own, fearing the loss of national original designations.

The change, making “Hispanic” a racial instead of an ethnic category, would eliminate the check-off boxes for national origins such as Mexican, Cuban and Puerto Rican.

“There is no unanimity on what any of this stuff means,” says Angelo Falcón, director of the National Institute for Latino Policy and co-chair of a coalition of Latino advocacy groups that recently met with Census officials.

“Right now, we’re very comfortable with having the Hispanic (origin) question… Hispanic as a race category? I don’t think there’s any consensus on that.”

Scholars oppose “Hispanic” being considered a race

Fordham University law professor Tanya Hernández, author of the new book Racial Subordination in Latin America, is among the scholars opposing the proposal to join race and ethnicity as a “Hispanic” category.

“Census data is used in very important ways, for example to monitor compliance regarding civil rights and racial disparities,” says Hernandez, who fears that eliminating existing racial categories would have a negative impact…

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