When it comes to describing their identity, most Hispanics don’t see themselves fitting into the standard racial categories used by the U.S. Census Bureau.
In a report called, “Race Reporting Among Hispanics: 2010,” written by Merarys Rios-Vargas and Fabian Romero from the Census Bureau, it was found that more than 40 percent of Hispanics who self-reported their origin did not report belonging to any federally recognized race group as defined by the Office of Management and Budget.
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The Office of Management and Budget define “Hispanic or Latino” as a person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin regardless of race.
But when it comes to race, according to the Pew Hispanic survey, half (51%) of Latinos identify their race as “some other race” or volunteer “Hispanic/Latino.” Meanwhile, 36% identify their race as white, and 3% say their race is black
During the 2010 Census, questions on race and Hispanic origin were asked of everyone living in the United States and in the results,the study found that, “the vast majority of the Hispanic population self-reported their origin (94.2 percent) and 5.8 percent were imputed. If the question was left blank the origin was imputed by one of the following three imputation types: assigned, allocated or substituted.”
The report explained that among the 5.8 percent that had their origin imputed, about 0.8 percent (415,285) had their origin assigned from either their response to the 2010 Census race question or from a previous census or ACS response, 2.7 percent (1.4 million) had their origin allocated and 2.3 percent (1.1 million) obtained their Hispanic origin through substitution.
The table below shows the racial classification of Hispanics who self-reported their Hispanic origin in the 2010 Census.
The findings presented by this report show us how Latinos struggle in reporting their race in the Census Bureau surveys.