One out of 4 Floridians are Latino. Did you know this?
Recent reports state that he Sunshine State is home to the third largest Hispanic population in the country, and by 2028 the majority of the Florida's population will come from an ethnic or racial minority group
But how are the state's Hispanics/Latinos faring economically?
A new report by the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) focuses on the issue. There is good news — Latinos are obtaining college degrees at faster rates, have higher rates of employment than other groups and are opening businesses at a brisk pace.
But there are also sobering numbers. Latino household wealth is vastly lower than that of non-Latino white households, and the poverty rate is nearly double that of whites.
Here are some key findings reported:
LATINOS IN THE WORKFORCE
Latinos lead in Florida in the percentage of the population in the labor force. A total of 63.9 percent of Latinos are in the workforce compared to 60.6 percent for the overall state population. In 2015, Latino men had the highest employment-to-population ratio among all other racial and ethnic groups in Florida (68.2 percent).
Latino businesses are a key source of growth in the Sunshine State. The amount of Hispanic-owned businesses increased by 34 percent between 2007 and 2012. In 2012, there were more than 600,000 Latino-owned businesses generating almost $90 million in gross receipts, a 23 percent jump from 2007.
COLLEGE DEGREE ATTAINMENT
Latinos are outpacing other groups in the increase in college degrees - the number of Florida Hispanics with a Bachelor degree or higher increased by almost 22 percent between 2010 and 2014, with over 670,000 Latinos now with a bachelor's degree or higher. The rate of increase for Latinos surpassed the rest of Florida, which grew at almost 14 percent.
CHILDREN’S HEALTH COVERAGE
The rate of uninsured Latino children is 12.1 percent, higher than the uninsured rate for all Florida children, which is at 9.3 percent. However, Florida had a significant drop in the amount of uninsured children between 2013 and 2014, which was at 16 percent. Children who have health insurance are more likely to surpass the economic status of their parents, the report notes, making improvements to health care access a key indicator of Hispanic well-being.
HOUSEHOLD INCOME AND POVERTY
The numbers here are sobering: the percentage of Latinos in poverty is at almost 22 percent, nearly double that of non-Latino whites. Between 2007 and 2014, there was a $1,191 decline in the median household income for Latino Floridians, which reflected a concerning trend of an increase in the state's poverty rate. In 2014, the median income in Hispanic households was $40,903 and $50,336 for White households.
LATINAS IN THE WORKFORCE
Latina women earn less than any other major racial group, regardless of gender. Latinas are also less likely to work in high-paying managerial or professional occupations. Latinas earn an average of $28,410 for full-time work, which is 59 cents for every dollar White men earn. Even NCLR says this is of great concern, the report was optimistic in stating that women in Florida are projected to reach parity with men by the year 2038.