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Statistical Modeling Methodology for the Voting Rights Act Section 203 Language Assistance Determinations

Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act includes provisions requiring the use of election materials in languages other than English for states or political subdivisions, specifically, when a minimum number of voting age U.S. citizens of specified language minority groups who are unable to speak English very well and have obtained less than a fifth-grade education is met. Data on these characteristics are provided by the 2010 Census and the American Community Survey (ACS), a general purpose sample survey designed to produce a large volume of estimates across the spectrum of the nation?s geographic areas and subgroups of the population. This article describes the small-area model and the estimation methods that were developed and applied to create the list of 2011 political subdivisions that were subject to the provisions.; Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act includes provisions requiring the use of election materials in languages other than English for states or political subdivisions, specifically, when a minimum number of voting age U.S. citizens of specified language minority groups who are unable to speak English very well and have obtained less than a fifth-grade education is met. Data on these characteristics are provided by the 2010 Census and the American Community Survey (ACS), a general purpose sample survey designed to produce a large volume of estimates across the spectrum of the nation?s geographic areas and subgroups of the population. This article describes the small-area model and the estimation methods that were developed and applied to create the list of 2011 political subdivisions that were subject to the provisions.