Thursday, May 29, 2014
Diversity is increasing among America’s youth because of unprecedented population increases of minority children, particularly Hispanic, as well as a significant decline in the number of non-Hispanic white children
In 1990, 32% of the population younger than age 20 was minority, increasing to 39% in 2000. By July 2012, 47% of the 82.5 million people under age 20 in the United States were from minority populations. Diversity is increasing because the minority child population is growing, while the non-Hispanic white child population dwindles. There are 7.7 million more minority young people now than in 2000, but 5.7 million fewer white children. From a demographic standpoint, Hispanics are driving rapid increases in diversity among America’s children. In fact, most of the growth in the minority child population between 2000 and 2012 was attributable to Hispanic births. Immigration was an important source of growth in the Hispanic population, but more than 95 percent of Hispanic children under the age of 5 were U.S. born. Indeed, three-fourths of the entire Hispanic population gain between July 2011 and July 2012 came from natural increase — the difference between births and deaths — rather than immigration. Unfortunately, this trend will likely continue. Hispanics are younger, which influences mortality as well as fertility. In 2010 there were 6.6 births for every Hispanic death; in contrast, the ratio was 1.1 and 2.1 births for every death among non-Hispanic whites and blacks, respectively.