Rep. Ted Lieu Calls Upon U.S. Census Bureau To Include “Taiwanese” Check Box On Census 2020 Form

Before the 2000 Census, FAPA already started the campaign for a separate check off box for “Taiwanese” under the race question. Then FAPA President Wen-yen Chen appeared as a witness to a congressional hearing before the Subcommittee on the Census in 1998. However, at the time, FAPA was informed by the Census Bureau that a 1997 State Department memorandum stipulated that the “listing of “Taiwanese” as a race in a Census questionnaire would inevitably raise sensitive political questions…contrary to the U.S. Government policy and U.S. national interest.”

Over the years, many Taiwanese American organizations campaigned for a “Taiwanese” check-off box. In 2008, the Taiwanese American Citizens League made a video starring prominent Taiwanese Americans, calling for the same, in which Ted Lieu participated.

Last October, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce (R-CA) urged the United States Census Bureau to add a separate “Taiwanese” check-off box in the Census 2020.

In a letter to Director of the U.S. Census Bureau Mr. John Thompson dated March 28, Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) called for a “Taiwanese” check box as well: “It is time the U.S. Census Bureau’s forms and data collection accurately reflect the residents of our great nation. I respectfully request that the U.S. Census Bureau expand the list of check-off boxes to include “Bangladeshi, Fijian, Hmong, Indonesian, Malaysian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Taiwanese, Thai, and Tongan.”

As a California State Senator, in 2011, Lieu co-authored a bill that required state agencies to include these ancestries and races in their data collection and tabulations. California Governor Jerry Brown signed the legislation into law.

FAPA President Peter Chen states: “The current policy of the Census Bureau to exclude a Taiwanese check off box is solely a U.S. self-imposed restriction. We must have accurate data on how many Taiwanese Americans there are today. There should be no outside political influence preventing the United States to count us. We want to be counted!”

Peter Chen concludes: “FAPA thanks the effort of the entire Taiwanese American community on this very important issue.”

March 28, 2017

John H. Thompson

Director

U.S. Census Bureau
4600 Silver Hill Road
Washington, DC 20233

Dear Director Thompson:

Thank you for your service. What makes America great is that we are a diverse nation. The U.S. Census Bureau recognizes that fact by providing check-off boxes on the census form for various ethnicities such as Filipino, Korean, Guamanian, Samoan and many others.  But it arbitrarily excludes check-off boxes for ethnicities such as Malaysian, Pakistani, Taiwanese, Tongan and many others. Why would there be a box for Filipino but not Malaysian, for Korean but not Pakistani, for Samoan but not Tongan? There is no logic that can support the way the census form is constructed. I write to request that the U.S. Census Bureau correct these arbitrary exclusions.

I have worked for many years to fix the issue of our government selectively picking certain ethnicities over others. As a California State Assembly member in 2007, I authored a bill that required state agencies to include “Bangladeshi, Fijian, Hmong, Indonesian, Malaysian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Taiwanese, Thai, and Tongan” in their data collection and tabulations (AB 295). The bill passed the legislature but was vetoed by the Governor. As a California State Senator in 2011, I coauthored a bill that essentially did the same thing (AB 1088). The Governor signed the legislation.

It is time the U.S. Census Bureau’s forms and data collection accurately reflect the residents of our great nation. I respectfully request that the U.S. Census Bureau expand the list of check-off boxes to include “Bangladeshi, Fijian, Hmong, Indonesian, Malaysian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Taiwanese, Thai, and Tongan.”

Thank you for your attention to this matter. Should you want to discuss this with my staff, please contact etc….

Sincerely,

TED W. LIEU

Member of Congress

美國眾議員劉雲平要求人口普查局在2020的人口普查表上將「台灣人」列入正式選項

在2020人口普查之前,台灣人公共事務會便已開始積極為在族裔的選項中加入「台灣人」而努力奔走。前FAPA會長陳文彥,在1998年曾受國會眾議院的人口委員會的聽證會邀請,以證人身份出席。但是台灣人公共事務會後來被人口普查局告知,國務院已在在1997年的便籤中裁示,「在人口普查表上列出台灣人的選項,最終將引起敏感的政治問題…這與美國政府的政策及美國國家利益則是背道而馳的。」

過去多年來,一直有許多台美團體持續推廣在人口調查表族群問題下另加入台灣人的選項。例如在2008年,台美公民協會(Taiwanese American Citizens League)特別製作一個影片來推廣這個議題,影片中有眾多知名的台美人入鏡支持,其中也包含台裔眾議員劉雲平(D-CA)。

在去年的10月27日,眾議院外交委員會主席羅伊斯(R-CA)致函要求人口普查局在2020的人口普查表上將「台灣人」列入正式選項。

在3月28日的眾議員劉雲平(D-CA)給人口普查局局長湯普森(John Thompson)的信中,劉亦要求加入台灣人之選項,劉說:「現在,是時候人口普查局的表單與資料蒐集應該準確地反映出我們國家的人口組成了。我誠摯地希望美國人口普查局能夠增列「孟加拉人,斐濟人,苗族,印尼人,馬來西亞人,巴基斯坦人,斯里蘭卡人,台灣人,泰國人,湯加人」等選項。

2011年劉雲平議員仍是加州州議員時,他曾共同起草一項法案,要求州立機構將這些族裔與血統納入其數據蒐集與列表選項中。當時的加州州長布朗(Jerry Brown)簽署其成為正式法律。

台灣人公共事務會會長陳正義強調:「人口普查局目前在普查表上排除台灣人選項的政策,是一個自我設限的規定。我們需要有一個正確算出最正確台美人的數據。不應該有任何外在的政治因素來阻止美國來得到這個數據。台美人要求被列入選項和尊重! 」

「台灣人公共事務會為這個議題在此感謝台美社區全體同仁之付出。」陳正義以此作結。

(March 29, 2017) Rep. Ted Lieu Calls Upon U.S. Census Bureau To Include “Taiwanese” Check Box On Census 2020 Form / 美國眾議員劉雲平要求人口普查局在2020的人口普查表上將「台灣人」列入正式選項