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U.S. Census Information for Native Americans

Tribes do not provide enrollment numbers to the Census, so every Native American must respond to the Census.

According to the 2010 census, 78% of Native Americans (American Indian and/or Alaska Native) live off tribal lands. American Indians and Alaskan Natives make up the largest undercount of any race in the United States at nearly 5%. As the original people of this land, these numbers are unacceptable and manifest themselves in profound ways in our community.

The City of Albuquerque ranks sixth in the U.S. for a city that has highest percentage of Native Americans and has as many as 400 tribes represented. A recent Point-in-Time Count by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development estimates that as much as 44% of the homeless population in Albuquerque are Native American.

How should I respond to the race question if I am Native American?

An individual’s response to the 2020 Census race question is based upon self-identification. The US Census Bureau does not tell individuals which boxes to mark or what heritage to write in.

People who identify as American Indian and Alaska Native may mark the American Indian and Alaska Native checkbox and enter the name of their enrolled or principal tribe(s) in the write-in area.

People may report multiple races and/or report multiple detailed groups. Each specific write-in area will record up to 200 characters and up to 6 detailed groups, allowing for long names and multiple groups to be reported.

It is highly encouraged to write in name of tribe as it appears in the US Federal Register.

New Mexico Tribes as name appears in US Federal Register:

  • Jicarilla Apache Nation
  • Mescalero Apache Tribe of the Mescalero Reservation
  • Navajo Nation
  • Ohkay Owingeh (previously listed as the Pueblo of San Juan)
  • Pueblo of Acoma
  • Pueblo of Cochiti
  • Pueblo of Jemez
  • Pueblo of Isleta
  • Pueblo of Laguna
  • Pueblo of Nambe
  • Pueblo of Picuris
  • Pueblo of Pojoaque
  • Pueblo of San Felipe
  • Pueblo of San Ildefonso
  • Pueblo of Sandia
  • Pueblo of Santa Ana
  • Pueblo of Santa Clara
  • Kewa Pueblo (previously listed as the Pueblo of Santo Domingo)
  • Pueblo of Taos
  • Pueblo of Tesuque
  • Pueblo of Zia
  • Ute Mountain Ute Tribe (previously listed as the Ute Mountain Tribe of the Ute Mountain Reservation)
  • Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation

Resources

New Mexico Native Census website

iCountNM

State of New Mexico’s collaborative of cities, counties and other state departments to ensure an accurate count across the state

U.S. Census Bureau

Videos:

National Congress of American Indians

Urban Indian Health Institute (UIHI)

Navajo Nation