SCOTUS Decides NOT to Add the Citizenship Question and Pushes Decision Back to Lower Courts

SCOTUS Decides NOT to Add the Citizenship Question and Pushes Decision Back to Lower Courts

Today, the Supreme Court announced their decision to temporarily halt the addition of a
citizenship question to the 2020 Census. In a 4-5 ruling, the case got sent back down to
the lower courts for further consideration. Although today’s decision is a victory for
children and families, we must stay vigilant as the U.S. Department of Commerce must
now provide an alternative and reasonable justification to the lower courts to move
forward with the addition of a citizenship question.

While The Children’s Partnership applauds the Supreme Court’s ruling, we recognize
the uncertainty with this decision and that there is still a lot more work to do to ensure
an accurate count of all children. In California, 4.5 million children live in immigrant
families and many are facing heightened fears of family separation, thus further
challenging their participation in the census. To these families we would like to say: you
matter, you and your children count, and your contributions to this state and country are

Regardless of this decision, we must continue our efforts to educate communities on the
importance of participation in the census and its connection to building power for our
communities, particularly low-income communities of color. An accurate, inclusive
census is fundamental to our nation as it determines how many seats each state gets in
the U.S. House of Representatives, the number of state legislative districts needed, and
how much federal funding is allocated to states and localities for their schools, clinics
and hospitals, neighborhood parks and other public facilities. With every child counted,
programs that provide health coverage, food assistance, early childhood and K-12
education, child care, and foster care are better resourced to support every child’s
healthy development.

Even without the citizenship question, our most vulnerable communities are at risk of
not being fairly represented and not attaining vital resources that children need the
most. We must renew our efforts to reassure our communities that census participation
is safe, important, and necessary. We will also join our partners in advocating for
adequate funding to ensure everyone is counted, and provide support to communities to
understand the shift to online completion of this survey. The only way to avoid the child
undercounts of the past is for everyone in each community to play a role in getting out
the count. TCP is committed to continue fighting alongside our trusted partners to
ensure all families have the information they need to complete the census and make
ALL kids count!

If you or someone you know still has questions about the census, call the toll-free
national census hotline run by NALEO (877-EL-CENSO or 877-352-3676), a nonprofit
advocacy organization. The hotline is open Monday-Friday from 8:30AM-8:30PM ET
and can take your call in English or Spanish.