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Why The Caribbean Count Bill Is Important – Congresswoman Yvette Clarke

CaribWorldNews, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. April 29, 2009: Congresswoman Yvette Clarke is again reiterating that her Caribbean Count Bill, H.R. 2071, `does not call for an additional race category` on the U.S. Census form.

The congresswoman insists that the historic bill, lobbied for by Carib ID`s Felicia Persaud, Chuck Mohan and Irwine Clare, and introduced on April 23rd, simply requires that, in the questionnaires used in the taking of any decennial census of population, a checkbox or other similar option be included so that respondents may indicate Caribbean extraction or descent.

She explained that the call is only for a self identifying ancestry category to get a more accurate count of Caribbeans living in the US.

`This bill is important to the 11th Congressional District because it draws attention to the significance of the 2010 US census to the Caribbean community and by extension the immigrant population at large, which because of cultural sensitivities and other factors can sometimes be reluctant to complete the forms,` said Congresswoman Clarke.

She continued: `Census Day is less than a year away, and it is imperative that every household participates in order to ensure an accurate count. Today, data generated by the Census is used not only to determine voter representation, but also to help equitably distribute federal funding from a wide range of government programs.

`Census data is an invaluable resource to private industry, helping businesses make sensible decisions about how and where to expand their capital. An accurate count of the Caribbean community will highlight their purchasing power and economic impact both in the US and global markets.`

Caribbean nationals are now urged to lobby their congressional representatives to become co-sponsors of the bill to ensure it becomes a reality. For the 2010 Census, nationals are urged to ensure they fill out and not throw out the forms, which will be mailed from the Census bureau in March of 2010. And to write in their country of origin under question 8 while ticking their ethnic identity as well. For more on CaribID log on to CaribID2010.com.