Arabic is the fastest-growing language in American households — and that’s leading the US Census Bureau to explore the tricky task of adjusting its questionnaires to accommodate the language’s right-to-left script. The bureau is using focus groups to explore possible changes to the 2020 census questionnaires for Arabic speakers who are not English-proficient, the Pew Research Center reported Friday.
Arabic is now the seventh-most commonly spoken non-English language in US households. An estimated 1.1 million people ages 5 and older speak Arabic at home, an increase of 29 percent between 2010 and 2014. The number who speak Spanish at home has grown only 6 percent during the same period. Of those who speak Arabic at home, 38 percent are not proficient in English, according to census estimates. FULL REPORT