Wednesday, September 09, 2020

2020 Census Will Tabulate Sikhs As Ethnic Category

India West reported yesterday that for the first time, Sikhs can be counted in the ongoing 2020 census as a separate group, despite the legal prohibition on the census asking questions about religion.  The Census Bureau will consider Sikhism to be a cultural or ethno-religious category.  As explained by India West:

Sikhism does not appear as a category to tick off on the census forms ..., but Sikhs can tick off the "Other Asian" category and write in their religion as a sub-category instead of listing themselves under Asian Indian or other listed racial and ethnic identities....

But while anyone can write in any religious or ethnic or linguistic identities beyond the categories that appear on the form, only Sikhs and some others are given a code that will allow them to be tabulated separately....

"'Sikh' will be included as a distinct detailed population group within the 'Asian' racial category, and not classified as 'Asian Indian' as it was in the 2010 Census when it was viewed as a religious response," according to the Census Bureau.

The bureau did not say where Sikhs who were not of Asian origin, like many members of the Sikh Dharma of the Western Hemisphere, who are racially White, can write in their separate identity.

"The Census Bureau included 'Sikh' codes as part of the draft 2020 Census code list within the 2018 Census Test Redistricting Data Prototype," it said.