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Middle Eastern & North African as Race/Ethnicity Category? Respond to OMB Proposal by April 30

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Adding Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) group as a Federal race/ethnicity classification? – OMB Proposal Open for Public Comment in the Federal Register until April 30th

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) received proposals from the Federal Interagency Working Group for Research on Race and Ethnicity (Working Group) for revisions to OMB’s current standards for maintaining, collecting, and presenting federal data on race and ethnicity. The four areas identified for revisions were:

  1. The use of separate questions versus a combined question to measure race and ethnicity and question phrasing as a solution to race/ethnicity question nonresponse;
  2. The classification of a Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) group and distinct reporting category;
  3. The description of the intended use of minimum reporting categories; and
  4. The salience of terminology used for race and ethnicity classifications and other language in the standard.

For further details about what the revisions will entail, please visit the Federal Register notice.

Respondents to the proposal are encouraged to send comments or questions electronically via email to, or written comments on the recommendations addressed to the Office of the U.S. Chief Statistician, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, 9th Floor, 1800 G St. NW., Washington, DC 20503. All comments much be received by April 30, 2017.

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