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NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund v. United States Dep’t of Justice

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act to compel the Department of Justice to release documents related to its request to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census.

Last Updated: June 4, 2021
Published: August 5, 2019

Note: The Bren­nan Center is not a parti­cipant in this case.

Summary 

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educa­tional Fund filed a lawsuit under the Free­dom of Inform­a­tion Act to compel the Depart­ment of Justice to release docu­ments related to its request to add a citizen­ship ques­tion to the 2020 Census.

Case Back­ground

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educa­tional Fund (LDF) sued the United States Depart­ment of Justice under the Free­dom of Inform­a­tion Act (FOIA) to compel produc­tion of records concern­ing the addi­tion of a citizen­ship ques­tion to the 2020 Census. On Decem­ber 12, 2017, the Depart­ment of Justice form­ally reques­ted the Commerce Depart­ment to include a citizen­ship ques­tion on the 2020 Census.

The plaintiffs asked the court for injunct­ive and other appro­pri­ate relief to compel the Depart­ment of Justice to disclose the reques­ted records.

On May 20, 2020, the court denied the defend­ants’ motion for summary judg­ment and gran­ted the plaintiffs’ cross-motion for summary judg­ment. The Depart­ment of Justice is required to conduct an adequate search to identify records respons­ive to each of the plaintiff’s FOIA request. 

On July 19, 2021, the case was volun­tar­ily dismissed with preju­dice.

Docu­ments