More Americans Are Identifying As Afro-Latino: Studies

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Many people are aware that the makeup of the American population is shifting rapidly. Research studies conducted by the Pew Center are confirming it.

According to a March 2021 study by the Pew Research Center, the number of people in the US who identify as Afro-Latino has doubled since 2000. At least 5% of the Black population in 2019 identified as Afro-Latino, the analysis found –– that's 2.4 million people out of the 46.8 million Black people in the nation overall who recognize themselves as both Black and Latino.

"These shares have changed since 2000," the study, entitled "The Growing Diversity of Black America," reads. "Then 93% identified their race and their ethnicity as Black alone. The number of people identifying as multiracial has also increased, growing from 1.5 million in 2000 to 3.7 million in 2019.

Pew noted that the US Black population changed in other ways too, as a larger portion of us obtained college degrees over the last two decades and more Black people in the US are foreign-born.

The Covid-19 pandemic has shaken up our population in unfortunate ways, however, causing a drop in Black people's life expectancy within the last year.

Why It Matters

So what does this data mean and why does it matter?

For one, as the population changes, it's important to know how it's changing and how people identify. Representation –– in media and the government –– also matters too.

As we're coming off the heels of an off-year election, understanding Black voters and the diversity within that group is critical, too.

Diversity initiatives, programs and opportunities, too. Beyond that, having a deeper understanding and affirmation of all of our heritage overall is important to telling the story and getting it right.

Check out the full study here.

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