In the Name of God, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Dear believers in the United States,

May peace be upon you, and the mercy and blessings of God.

As we approach the start of the 2020 Census collection, which may be completed online, we would like to remind our respected community about the roles and responsibilities of living in our country. I.M.A.M. has previously stated that the position of the supreme religious authority is to encourage believers to practice their constitutional rights according to the principle of good citizenship and integration while preserving their religious identity and noble culture.

The U.S. Constitution mandates that the country count its population once every ten years. The results determine congressional representation and inform the distribution of federal funding that will impact infrastructure and services. In addressing the question of whether to participate in the census, we previously relayed the question to several Grand Jurists in the Islamic seminaries. The answers generally encouraged participation that supports the interest of the believing community and fosters better coexistence with others. This would improve the quality of life and cooperative living, as well as solidifying the concepts and principles of a sound society.

In addition, the twelfth annual conference of the Council of Shia Muslim Scholars of North America, where a number of scholars met with trustworthy experts and activists regarding the roles of Muslims in the West, provided essential recommendations to the believers. The recommendations stressed the need for Muslims to understand their role in the future of their homelands and fully practice their constitutional rights to contribute to the development of their countries and the advancement of their societies.

Therefore, we encourage participation in the 2020 Census and ask our community to be well informed of their society’s affairs. The Commander of the Faithful, Ali ibn Abi Talib (p), said, “I command you to be wary of God and order your [societal] issues.” (Nahj al-balagha, letter 47).

We have provided some helpful links from the 2020 Census website to help you in participating in the census.

General information about the census: what-is-2020-census.html

Responding online: ways-to-respond/responding- online.html

Information about the questions on the census form: about-questions.html

Information on the use of census data: census-data.html

Information on the protection of census data: data-protection.html

Census information in other languages: languages.html

As we have stated previously, we believe through true citizenship and real unity, Muslim-American communities can make a significant difference now and in the future of the United States of America and the world.

May peace, mercy, and the blessings of God, be upon you.