Latinos Outnumber Caucasians in California for First Time

cnn latinoCalifornia is now the first large state without a white plurality. According to latimes, as of July 1st, 2014, there were approximately 14.99 million Latinos in California compared to 14.92 million Caucasians. Although the tally accounted for last July’s population, it was released in early June of this year.

“This is sort of the official statistical recognition of something that has been underway for almost an entire generation,” said Roberto Suro, director of the Tomás Rivera Policy Institute at USC.

With an average age of 29, the Latino population in California is young– especially compared to white Californians’ median age, 45. This means the increase of young Latino workers will make up for the white baby boomers who are reaching retirement age.

The nation’s Latino population has grown 57% since 2000, when Latinos numbered 35.3 million. Latinos accounted for most of the nation’s growth — 56% — from 2000 to 2010, according to the Pew Research Center.

Demographers predict Latinos will make up nearly 50% of Californians by 2060.

The continued influx and growth of Latinos in the United States is not being fueled exclusively by immigration but by second- and third-generation immigrants who are settling down and starting families, said Marcelo Suárez-Orozco, a professor and dean of education at UCLA’s Graduate School of Education and Information Studies.

“Where L.A. goes is where the rest of the state goes and where the rest of the country goes,” said Suárez-Orozco. “We announce, demographically speaking, the future for the rest of the country.”