PRESS RELEASE: Supreme Court Decision in Department of Commerce v. New York



NC Counts Coalition
Durrell Johnson


North Carolina Counts Coalition Statement on the 
Supreme Court Decision in Department of Commerce v. New York

Raleigh, NC (June 27, 2019) – The Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the citizenship question cannot be added to the 2020 Census, for now.

“Today’s Supreme Court decision on the citizenship question supports the fundamental Constitutional mandate that the Census obtain a complete count of every individual in the United States; this is a victory for our democracy,” said Stacey Carless, Executive Director of the NC Counts Coalition. “Our work continues. We must educate, engage and mobilize community leaders and organizations to ensure that every person is counted. With our partners, through our collective strength, we commit to achieving a full and accurate count of North Carolina.”

North Carolina is home to about 767,656 foreign-born individuals; our state has the 14th largest foreign-born population in the United States. More than 300,000 have already become naturalized citizens, and many more are, or will be, eligible to apply for citizenship. The addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 Census would significantly threaten participation, risking far less accurate data for North Carolina. Census Bureau representatives have long reported widespread and unprecedented fear among respondents to other surveys; households are reluctant to participate fully and provide accurate information. A citizenship question on the Census would raise concerns in all households – native and foreign-born—about the confidentiality of the information provided to the government and how government authorities may use that information.

North Carolina has too much at stake to risk an inaccurate Census. The Census directly affects the allocation of $16.3 billion annually in federal resources to our state. Additionally, it provides key decision-makers with the information they need to ensure that government resources are directed strategically to our communities. Also, the Census ensures that communities are appropriately represented in the statehouse and in Congress. An accurate, inclusive and complete 2020 Census count will improve the quality of life for all North Carolinians. 

NC Counts Coalition, Democracy NC, Southern Coalition for Social Justice, NC Child, El Pueblo, NALEO Educational Fund and North Carolina Asian Americans joined the national “We Count” campaign through a video on the importance of the Census to North Carolina. Click here to watch.

The NC Counts Coalition was established in 2017 to prepare North Carolina for the 2020 Census. The Coalition, a 501(c)(3), serves as a hub to facilitate cross-sector coordination among government, planning and community organizations, service providers, businesses and others to achieve a complete and accurate Census count for North Carolina. For more information go to our website at