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The Journal Gazette

Friday, June 23, 2017 7:00 pm

State's Hispanic, Asian populations growing

RON SHAWGO | The Journal Gazette

Census breakdown

Population by race/ethnicity in northeast Indiana counties

Hispanic:

County`2010`2016

Adams`1,412`1,577

Allen`23,093`27,195

DeKalb`1,031`1,195

Huntington`631`803

Kosciusko`5,634`6,254

Noble`4,567`4,903

Steuben`982`1,214

Wells`564`809

Whitley`515`645

 

Non-Hispanic White:

County`2010`2016

Adams` 32,727 ` 33,301

Allen` 279,663 ` 284,388

DeKalb` 40,755 ` 41,043

Huntington` 36,026 ` 34,978

Kosciusko` 70,309 ` 70,863

Noble` 42,525 ` 42,108

Steuben` 32,785 ` 32,303

Wells` 26,799 ` 26,692

Whitley` 32,482 ` 32,410

 

Black:

County`2010`2016

Adams` 171 ` 290

Allen` 46,536 ` 49,579

DeKalb` 275 ` 366

Huntington` 287 ` 417

Kosciusko` 821 ` 1,173

Noble` 309 ` 460

Steuben` 248 ` 387

Wells` 165 ` 295

Whitley` 189 ` 276

 

Asian:

County`2010`2016

Adams` 118 ` 156

Allen` 11,231 ` 16,258

DeKalb` 246 ` 291

Huntington` 236 ` 304

Kosciusko` 815 ` 1,200

Noble` 258 ` 368

Steuben` 241 ` 343

Wells` 137 ` 227

Whitley` 189 ` 227

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

Despite anti-immigration rhetoric surrounding political campaigns, Indiana's Hispanic population continues to grow, though not as fast as in past years.

And while its numbers are still relatively small, the Asian population continues to be the fastest growing race in the state and nation, according recently released census population estimates.

The 2016 estimates also show the nation's median age, where half of the population is younger and half older, rose from 35.3 years in 2000 to 37.9 last year. Indiana recorded similar numbers, while Allen County's median age rose from 34.2 to 35.9 during that period. 

The baby-boom generation is largely responsible, Peter Borsella, a demographer in the Census Bureau's Population Division, said in a media release. Baby boomers began turning 65 in 2011. Residents age 65 and over accounted for 15.2 percent of the U.S. population last year, up from 12.4 percent in 2000.

Locally, Allen County is home to an estimated 27,000 Hispanics, an increase of about 4,000 since 2010, or 17.8 percent. Allen has nearly two-thirds of northeast Indiana's 45,000 Hispanics.

Statewide, Hispanics increased an estimated 15.4 percent since 2010 to about 450,000.

In real numbers, the Indiana Hispanic population has grown an average 10,000 a year since 2000, said Matt Kinghorn, an economic analyst in Bloomington for the Indiana Business Research Center.

"But if you compare that to between 2000 and 2010, it was about 17,500 a year growth," he said. "So it's still growing but not growing as quickly as it had the last decade."

As reasons, Kinghorn points to less Hispanic immigration to the U.S. and less state-to-state migration within the U.S.

Meanwhile, Indiana's Asian population has grown an estimated 39.4 percent to 173,109 since 2010. The Asian population grew 44.8 percent in Allen County to more than 16,000. The county is home to a large Burmese refugee population, which adds to that count.

While Asians make up only about 2 percent of the state population, their numbers have picked up pace this decade compared to Hispanics, blacks and non-Hispanic whites, whose populations have slowed, Kinghorn said.

Indiana's white population has remained nearly level this decade. Blacks have seen increases of little more than 1 percent each year, and Hispanics have had yearly increases of 2 to 3 percent.

Still, Indiana remains largely non-Hispanic white with about 80 percent of those age 18 to 64 in that category.

While much of the nation is more diverse, the Hoosier state is slowly changing. Those identifying as non-Hispanic white make up 71 percent of those younger than 18, Kinghorn said.

"So you're seeing that we're getting more diverse and we're getting more diverse from the ground up," he added. "It's just the minority populations are a lot younger."

rshawgo@jg.net