Task Force: Time to 'Queer the Census'

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Inga Sarda-Sorensen, Director of Communications
(Office) 646.358.1463
isorensen@theTaskForce.org

Task Force: Time to 'Queer the Census'

WASHINGTON - The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force urges lesbian, gay, bisexual
and transgender (LGBT) people to fill out their census forms today on
National Census Day, a target date for households to mail back their
completed census forms before April 12. The Task Force was instrumental
in making sure that this year's census counts married same-sex couples.

The Task Force also launched the Queer the Census campaign,
which has garnered widespread public and media attention. The campaign
is designed to ensure that LGBT people are accurately counted in the
next census. The campaign asks individuals to place a sticker on the
back of the census envelope that asks the U.S. Census Bureau to count us
all. To date, more than 100,000 stickers have been ordered from people
throughout the United States and the territories.

Tens of thousands have also signed the Task Force's petition
to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and to the
U.S. Census Bureau to make sure that LGBT people are counted in the next
census and other federal surveys. In addition, National Gay and Lesbian
Task Force Deputy Executive Director Darlene Nipper is participating at
a congressional briefing today where she is discussing Queer the Census
and ways to ensure LGBT people and households are counted.

Statement by Darlene Nipper, Deputy Executive
Director
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

"We pushed hard to make it possible for married same-sex couples to
be counted in the 2010 census. While that's an important victory, the
census still doesn't count all of us. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender people are essentially rendered invisible in the survey that
is supposed to reflect the diversity of America's population - and
that's a big problem. When LGBT people aren't counted, we also don't
count when it comes to services, resources and programs. Census data is
the basis for how the government spends more than $400 billion each
year. This data affects everything from local school board funding to
health programs to federal policy; without an accurate count of the LGBT
community, we lose out on funding for real, everyday services and we
largely remain invisible in the eyes of the government.

"That's why we launched the Queer the Census campaign, to demand that
the next U.S. census includes a question that asks if you are lesbian,
gay, bisexual or transgender. The data collected affects issues critical
to everyone - like our health care, our economic stability and even our
safety. Tens of thousands of people are queering the census and telling
the federal government that it's time to count us all."

Watch National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Executive
Director Rea Carey
queer her own census in this video clip.

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The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force builds the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, building the organizational capacity of our movement and generating groundbreaking research through our Policy Institute.

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