CaribWorldNews, WASHINGTON, D.C., Weds. Sept. 9, 2009: With the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month set to begin next week, the U.S. Census yesterday unleashed a barrage of numbers highlighting the growth of this community.
According to the Census there were 46.9 million people of Hispanic origin as of July 1, 2008, making people of Hispanic origin the nation`s largest minority group.
The numbers come as National Hispanic Heritage Month is set to get underway on Sept. 15. The Census account of the Hispanic community is a far cry from the silence received during Caribbean American Heritage Month by this body, which admits it has no way to accurately tell this community`s story in numbers.
But its data for Hispanics, who have their own origin category on Census forms unlike Caribbean immigrants, is mind boggling. There were 10.4 million Hispanic family households in the United States in 2008.
Data also revealed that every two people added to the nation`s population between July 1, 2007, and July 1, 2008, was Hispanic and there were 1.5 million Hispanics added to the population during the period. Most are young, with a median age of 27.7 years while there were 1.6 million Hispanic-owned businesses in 2002.
They are currently the largest minority group in several states. These states are Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
Nearly 43 percent of Hispanic-owned firms operated in construction; administrative and support, and waste management and remediation services; and other services, such as personal services, and repair and maintenance; especially in Los Angeles County, (188,422); Miami-Dade County, (163,187); and Harris County, Texas (61,934).
Revenue generated by Hispanic-owned businesses in 2002 was up 19 percent from 1997. However, their median income was just $38,679 as of 2007 while 21.5 percent live in poverty as of 2007, up from 20.6 percent in 2006.
Some 32.1 percent lacked health insurance in 2007 while only 13 percent of the Hispanic population, aged 25 and older had a bachelor`s degree or higher in 2008. There were only 1 million Hispanics, aged 25 and older with advanced degrees in 2008.
There are, however, 1.1 million in the armed forces. Hispanics are projected to be close to 30 percent of the nation`s population by July 1, 2050.
The Census is able to disseminate detailed facts on this group because it collects the data based on the data gathered from the U.S. Census form, which gives Hispanics their own origin category.
Meanwhile, the Census Bureau`s Facts for Features series celebrates African-American History Month, Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month, Hispanic Heritage Month, Women`s History Month, Irish-American Heritage Month and American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month among others. CAHM is still MIA from the list, however.