Council member Margaret Chin is introducing legislation to let New Yorkers to identify as more than one race on city documents.
The bill introduced on Tuesday aims to provide better demographic information, and give New Yorkers the opportunity to reflect their racial heritage on documents, including employment and public housing applications.
“Right now, more than 300,000 multi-racial New Yorkers are unfairly forced to choose one race and ignore all others on city documents, just because those documents haven’t caught up with 21st-century demographic shifts,” Chin said in a statement.
The U.S. Census started allowing for more than one race box to be checked in 2000.
“I think that people being able to check more than one box will lead to more demographic statistics the city and state can use to identify the needs of communities,” said Thanu Yakupitiyage, a spokesperson with New York Immigration Coalition. “We definitely support Margaret Chin.”