March 9, 2011 | PR Newswire | Original Article

Latinos Represent Significant Number of California Youth

LOS ANGELES, March 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --  More than half (51%) of Californians under 18 are Latino, according to a National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund analysis of newly released Census 2010 data.  The Latino population in California is significantly younger than the non-Latino population.

"The fact that Latinos account for more than half of the youth population in the state is stunning.  It is also a reminder that we must do all we can to support policies that advance the educational achievement and civic engagement of Latino youth," said State Senator and NALEO Board Member Alex Padilla.  "Clearly, Latinos will continue to play a larger and larger role in our state.  Improving educational and economic opportunities for Latino youth will ensure a brighter future for all Californians."

Between 2000 and 2010, while the state's overall population grew 10% from 33.9 million to 37.3 million, the Latino population increased 28% from 11.0 million to 14.0 million.

Latino residents account for an unprecedented 90% of the state's overall growth over the last ten years, and now represent 38% of the state's residents.  

"The Census numbers released yesterday confirm that California retained its 53 congressional seats because of the significant growth of the Latino population. Now we need to make sure these numbers result in an opportunity for full and fair representation for the Latino community as the redistricting process gets underway," said NALEO Educational Fund Board Member Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA).

"In addition, the huge growth of Latino youth in the state highlights the folly of slashing federal, state and local education and training dollars—a recipe for future economic disaster for our state and the nation," she continued.

Most of California's ten largest cities also have significant Latino populations, including Anaheim (53%), Los Angeles (49%), Fresno (47%), Long Beach (41%) and San Jose (33%). Three out of four (75%) California Latinos live in the state's ten largest counties, with 34% residing in Los Angeles County alone.