The 2020 Census will not ask people about their sexual orientation or gender identity, according to a Tuesday announcement.
The Trump administration nixed plans to collect extra data on the gay community, despite Democratic efforts to gather the information, reports the Washington Times.
It seemed sexual orientation questions would be added to the survey when the Census Bureau released a list early Tuesday that included them as potential subjects.
A few hours later, though, the bureau released a statement, saying they had been added by mistake.
“The Subjects Planned for the 2020 Census and American Community Survey report released today inadvertently listed sexual orientation and gender identity as a proposed topic in the appendix. This topic is not being proposed to Congress for the 2020 Census or American Community Survey,” the bureau said in a statement.
The census usually tracks age, race, occupation, marital status and same-sex households. For years, activists have tried to get the Census Bureau to ask questions about gender identity and sexual orientation.
Many gay activists were upset about the Census Bureau’s refusal to track people’s sexuality, calling the decision a way to “erase LGBTQ people.”
“If the government doesn’t know how many LGBTQ people live in a community, how can it do its job to ensure we’re getting fair and adequate access to the rights, protections and services we need?” Meghan Maury with the National LGBTQ Task Force said.
Jennifer C. Pizer, the law and policy director at LGBT legal organization Lambda Legal, called the move an affront to science.
“This is an assault on science as well as on a uniquely vulnerable group of Americans,” Pizer said. “It only strengthens our determination to be visible and counted in our communities, in town halls, in the streets, and in courtrooms nationwide. We number in the millions and we aren’t going back.”
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