Hansi Lo Wang

Hansi Lo Wang is a national correspondent based at NPR's New York bureau. He covers the changing demographics of the U.S. and breaking news in the Northeast for NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, hourly newscasts, and NPR.org.

In 2016, his reporting after the church shooting in Charleston, S.C., won a Salute to Excellence National Media Award from the National Association of Black Journalists. He was also part of NPR's award-winning coverage of Pope Francis' tour of the U.S. His profile of a white member of a Boston Chinatown gang won a National Journalism Award from the Asian American Journalists Association in 2014.

Since joining NPR in 2010 as a Kroc Fellow, he's contributed to NPR's breaking news coverage of the Orlando nightclub shooting, protests in Baltimore after the death of Freddie Gray, and the trial of George Zimmerman in Florida.

Wang previously reported on race, ethnicity, and culture for NPR's Code Switch team. He has also reported for Seattle public radio station KUOW and worked behind the scenes of NPR's Weekend Edition as a production assistant.

A Philadelphia native, Wang speaks both Mandarin and Cantonese dialects of Chinese. As a student at Swarthmore College, he hosted, produced, and reported for a weekly podcast on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A major decision on the way the U.S. government collects information about race and ethnicity through the census and other surveys was expected to be announced this week by the Trump administration.

But the White House's Office of Management and Budget, which sets standards for this type of data for all federal agencies, was silent on Friday, which OMB had said was the deadline for an announcement.

A spokesperson for OMB could not provide any information about the delay.

"White" has been a constant of the U.S. census.

Other racial categories for the national head count have come and gone over the centuries. But "white" has stuck ever since U.S. marshals went door to door by horseback for the first census in 1790, tallying up the numbers of "free white males" and "free white females," plus "all other free persons" and "slaves."

Some major changes may be coming to how the U.S. government collects data about the country's racial and ethnic makeup.

The Trump administration has been considering proposals to ask about race and ethnicity in a radical new way on the 2020 Census and other surveys that follow standards set by the White House.

More than two months since Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas and historic flooding damaged tens of thousands of houses in the Houston area, many homeowners who got hit are in a bind. Their now-gutted homes are financial drains.

That's bringing out investors who are eager to pick up damaged houses at low prices.

Call it a post-Harvey frenzy for flooded homes.

Corey Boyer, an investor based in Cypress, Texas, has been putting in more than a handful of offers – many site unseen.

Water spinach goes by many other names. A staple among some Asian-American families for stir-frys and soups, this stalky vegetable with arrowhead leaves and hollow stems is known as ong choy in Cantonese and rau muống in Vietnamese.

But in a Cambodian-American community tucked down the gravel roads of Rosharon, Texas — about a half-hour south of Houston — most people call it by its Khmer name, trakoun.

The 2020 Census is expected to cost more than $15 billion — an increase of more than 25 percent above the U.S. Census Bureau's original estimate — Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told members of the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform during a Thursday hearing.

"There are still many challenges ahead," said Ross, who says additional funding from Congress is "urgently needed" as preparations continue for the once per decade, constitutionally mandated count of every person in the U.S.

After an outcry from advisers to the U.S. Census Bureau, the federal agency is no longer considering a proposal to remove a question about sexual orientation from a marketing survey for the 2020 Census.

Asian-Americans are an incredibly diverse group.

To help capture that diversity, some states have recently passed laws requiring state agencies to collect more detailed demographic data about the country's fastest-growing racial group.

Those policies have been met with a backlash from within the Asian-American community.

Updated at 4:10 p.m. ET

Members of the oldest civil rights organization in the U.S., the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, are heading into their annual meeting with no speaker from the White House and a new interim president and CEO. The meeting started Saturday in Baltimore.

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Updated Tuesday, September 5

During the Obama administration, at least four federal agencies, including the Justice Department, asked the Census Bureau to add questions about sexual orientation and gender identity to the American Community Survey, NPR has learned.

Besides the Justice Department, those agencies include the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Environmental Protection Agency.

It's been almost four years since Patrisse Khan-Cullors helped birth the hashtag #blacklivesmatter. Those three words gained national attention for demonstrations against police brutality and grew into a movement.

But progress has been slow, admits Khan-Cullors, a Los Angeles-based activist who co-founded the Black Lives Matter Network.

A new leader is set to temporarily take over the U.S. Census Bureau after Director John Thompson retires from the post on Friday.

The Commerce Department, which is in charge of the bureau, has announced Ron Jarmin as the acting director. A career staffer who has spent 25 years at the Bureau, Jarmin currently serves as the associate director for economic programs.

The U.S. Census Bureau has never asked Americans about sexual orientation and gender identity. Last year, though, requests for that data came from more than 75 members of Congress and multiple federal agencies.

Still, the Census Bureau concluded "there was no federal data need" to collect this information, the bureau's outgoing director, John Thompson, wrote in March.

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