According to reports, the Sikh American community on Thursday urged the United States Census Bureau to have a distinct Sikh category in the next 2020 census.
In a submission to the U.S. Census, the Untied Sikhs said that the distinct Sikh category would go a long way in making everyone count, so that action can be taken to address bullying and hate crimes against the community.
"Stereotypes fuelled by the media, discriminatory policies and corrupted public attitudes toward immigrants, especially since September 11, 2001, exacerbate feelings of bigotry that result in a backlash against the Sikh community like never before,” United Sikhs argued, according to a media release.
They also said that Sikhs can trace their ancestry in the United States back to at least 100 years when many came to California to work on the railroads. Even now Sikhs face bias, racism and xenophobia.
"Yet, to date, they are grouped into a general Asian-Indian category in the US Census and this ignores their unique circumstances," it rued.
Sikhs should be represented as a distinct group in the Census, it said.
US Census will provide funding in order to address civil rights violations. It is well known that the Sikhs in the country have disproportionately suffered backlash, hate crimes and bullying since September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
According to recent studies, estimated at least half of the members of Sikh Community have been bullied, harassed or even assaulted at some time in their life because of bigotry and xenophobia; it said, asserting that Sikhs meet the criteria for representation in the Census as a distinct ethnic group.