The 2010 Census “Write in Taiwanese” Campaign

Can you donate today to support our campaign?’s goal is to raise at least $10,000 to augment our campaign and to purchase TV broadcast airtime on ethnic media channels to reach the wider Taiwanese American audience. We are severely underfunded for this effort, but we recognize that this is our one chance this decade. Will you help us?

As 2010 approaches, it’s yet another year for the US Census Bureau to gather data on residents in the United States. One major issue for our Taiwanese American community is the lack of accurate identification of those who have ties to Taiwan.

In the 2000 Census, there were only 144,795 Taiwanese identified. Anyone who is actively involved in our Taiwanese American community knows that this is inaccurate. Current working estimates of the Taiwanese American population is probably in the range of at least 1 million. We are severely under counted by at least 80%!

Accurate Census enumeration of Taiwanese Americans is extraordinarily important because the Census is the only potential source of data on the size, geographic distribution, and demographic characteristics of the Taiwanese-identifying population in the United States, and this in turn affects funding and representation for our community. Without an accurate count, there will be no concrete evidence that a substantial number of individuals in the U.S. identify as Taiwanese. Simply put, we need to be counted in the Census in order to prove our very existence.

The main issue in the US Census is the lack of an identification check box that allows us to easily identify ourselves as of Taiwanese descent. So, for now, we are the “Other Asian” and we need to declare our identity by writing in “TAIWANESE” in the 2010 Census.

Make a difference. Spread the word. It’s time to represent.

Visit our campaign website for more videos and info about the cast & crew:


Students! Check this out! $500 scholarship opportunties from the Taiwanese American Citizens League to support the Census campaign. High school and college students eligible! That’s right. A good idea or an essay can get you $500. The deadline is February 1st for high school students, and February 12th for college students/organizations.

For more information about the campaign and the scholarship applications, visit:

Charlie C. of Fremont, CA
Joan P. of Honolulu, HI
Christine S. of Los Angeles, CA
Sarah W. of Mountain View, CA
Carolyn W. of Piscataway, NJ
Barry H. of Pasadena, CA
Julie C. of New York, NY
Mark W. of Walnut, CA

6 Responses to “The 2010 Census “Write in Taiwanese” Campaign”

  1. Leyina Chen

    I’m glad I found answer to my question regarding how much was needed to complete production of a PSA video and purchase TV broadcast airtime.

    To further comment on the article regarding the Census 2010. It is more than a head count. We must understand the importance of the cesus. The data collected in the census is used by local governments to determine exactly how more than $400 billion dollars of federal funds will be used. Census data are used by the private sector as well as state and local governments to determine where new jobs and job development programs are needed. Community planners and leaders use census data to decide where such essential facilities are most needed, such as hospitals, new schools, fire stations, or public library. Corporations large and small use census data for market research to determine the locations for new commercial enterprises, such as grocery stores, pharmacies and other essential services. Potential homebuyers use census data to research property values, median income and other demographic information about a particular community or neighborhood.

  2. J. Beacon

    Why is this movement for listing Taiwanese as “Other Asian” rather than “Pacific Islander”? Many movements push for Taiwan’s recognition as a modern island country (even 2008 DPP candidate Frank Hsieh), yet the movement is for “Other Asian.” Won’t this divide the Taiwanese who participate in the census into three – 1) Chinese, 2) Taiwanese-Other Asian, and 3) Taiwanese-Pacific Is.?

  3. Jack Hsu

    J.Beacon, because we are not Pacific Islanders. True Pacific Islanders are Polynesians, Micronesians, and Melanesians. If you want, you can add the Malay countries such as Filipinos, Malaysians, and Indonesians as they are genetically similar to the true Pacific Islanders. It is true that a lot of Taiwanese do have some aboriginal blood in them, but generally if it is traceable you are only looking at 1/8 if not lower. The bulk of our blood is from the Asian mainland, and our culture is overwhelmingly Holko/Hakka which are from the Asian mainland. That is why we would be “other Asians” and not “other Pacific Islanders.”

  4. Many many many “Ethnic Chinese” (華裔美人) who were born in any continent in the world, including Taiwan and that’s what we are. According to U.S. Census bureau the term “Chinese” is not 中國人, rather it’s like “漢人”. Is most Taiwanese 漢人?, I suppose so.

  5. Lorenzo Lin

    Jack Hsu, if you’re not aboriginal (even 1%), then you’re not Taiwanese. You’re Chinese. Since you are Chinese, you can get off this website, and put yourself as Chinese on the census. Sorry, waishengren don’t count as Taiwanese. Only benshengren do.

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