Watch CBS News

Michigan U.S. Senators Back 'Middle East-North Africa' Category On Next Census

DETROIT (AP) — Michigan's U.S. senators and a congresswoman are voicing their support for testing a Middle Eastern and North African descent category on the census.

Democratic Sens. Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters and Rep. Debbie Dingell of Dearborn sent a letter this week backing testing to the director of the U.S. Census Bureau. The bureau said last month that it would test the change by holding focus groups if it got enough positive feedback from the public.

The legislators write in the letter that the Middle Eastern and North African classification would "ensure the proper allocation of government resources."

Arab-Americans, who make up the majority of the proposed classification, have previously been classified as white on the census by default. Congress would have to approve the proposal for it to be added to the 2020 census.


Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.