Collecting and Publishing Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity: Understanding OMB Directive 15

This fact sheet provides guidance on the U.S. Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) Statistical Policy Directive No. 15, which sets forth the minimum set of categories that federal agencies must use when they collect information on race and ethnicity. It also explains why OMB Directive 15 no longer reflects the full racial and ethnic diversity of the nation’s population or the way many people choose to identify themselves, and it outlines improvements that many civil rights stakeholders are calling for to modernize the standards.

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