Change to Census roils many immigrants

Posted: Updated:
WOODBURY -

Some immigrants say the addition of a question about citizenship status on the 2020 United States Census is a bullying tactic aimed at immigrant communities.

North Bay Shore resident Rodman Serrano, 23, says many of his relatives will not fill out of the form. Some of them are undocumented, and they fear that they could be targeted by authorities later on.

"People like my cousins, like my parents, will not participate, even though they've been living in this country for 20 years," he says.

Walter Barrientos, a local coordinator for the immigration advocacy group Make the Road NY, says since the Census helps determine how federal funds get distributed, boycotting it could mean communities receive less money for things like schools, hospitals and infrastructure.

"This could have dire impacts in many communities across Long Island where resources are already scarce," he says. "With fewer people counting themselves in the Census, it will mean that fewer resources could come."

Rep. Peter King, a Republican from Seaford, says he wants a guarantee from the Census Bureau that people will not be targeted just for answering the question.

"We have to make sure no action is going to be taken against someone who says they're not a citizen," he says. "But, for the purposes of getting a sense of the population, it's a reasonable question."

  • Power & PoliticsMore>>

  • Officials: US to send 1,500 troops to Middle East

    Officials: US to send 1,500 troops to Middle East

    Friday, May 24 2019 12:23 PM EDT2019-05-24 16:23:31 GMT
    Officials said members of Congress were notified following a White House meeting Thursday to discuss Pentagon proposals to bolster the U.S. force presence in the Middle East.
    Officials said members of Congress were notified following a White House meeting Thursday to discuss Pentagon proposals to bolster the U.S. force presence in the Middle East.
  • Power & Politics: State Sen. John Brooks

    Power & Politics: State Sen. John Brooks

    Thursday, May 23 2019 10:19 PM EDT2019-05-24 02:19:31 GMT
    State Sen. John Brooks stopped by the News 12 studio to answer viewer questions and cover topics such as veterans' issues, school funding, tax relief and more.
    State Sen. John Brooks stopped by the News 12 studio to answer viewer questions and cover topics such as veterans' issues, school funding, tax relief and more.
  • Trump meeting with Dems goes bust in a flash

    Trump meeting with Dems goes bust in a flash

    Wednesday, May 22 2019 8:52 PM EDT2019-05-23 00:52:15 GMT
    Prospects for passing a large infrastructure bill evaporated Wednesday as Trump announced that he won't work with Democratic lawmakers on policy while they continue to investigate him.
    Prospects for passing a large infrastructure bill evaporated Wednesday as Trump announced that he won't work with Democratic lawmakers on policy while they continue to investigate him.
sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."