Voting Rights Act – Language Assistance Requirements

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 enacted significant protections to guard against discrimination in voter registration. How does that relate to Census data? The census provides the benchmark of our nation’s demographic portrait including data on race and Hispanic origin, age, and language. In the 2006 reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act, the Census Bureau was required to provide a list of jurisdictions across the nation that must provide language assistance for groups who are unable to speak or understand English adequately enough to participate in the electoral process.

The Census Bureau released a list of 248 jurisdictions today to fulfill their legal obligation. It will be published in the Federal Register on Thursday, October 13. Here is the Census Bureau’s press release.

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