Hispanics in Florida

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Hispanics in Florida

Reprinted with permission from
Florida Trend Magazine

United by one language, Florida Hispanics are diverse, multifaceted, and an unstoppable engine for economic and social growth.

Findings from the most recent U.S. Census Bureau and the Pew Hispanic Center research shed a fascinating light on the customs and trends of the nation’s fastest growing minority, and how it’s influencing the demographic and economic makeup of the Sunshine State. At Hispanic Unity we are proud to contribute to Florida’s prosperity by providing Hispanic –and all immigrant communities– the tools to prosper and succeed.

  • Hispanics now make up almost 1 in 4 Floridians…up from 1 in 6 a decade ago
  • Broward County’s Hispanic population is the fastest growing in Florida, according to the 2012 US Census Bureau, soaring to almost 460,000 in 2011.
  • Hispanics are now the largest minority in Florida. As of 2009 there were 3,750,768 Hispanic residing in Florida. Hispanics represent about 20.5% of the total population in Florida. 1
  • Still at just over 1 million, Cubans-Americans still are Florida’s largest Hispanic group, making up about a third of the state’s Latinos, according to the Census’ American Community Survey. Puerto Ricans now number more than 725,000.
  • Mexicans are the fastest growing Hispanic group in Florida, but there are significant and growing numbers of Nicaraguans, Colombians, Venezuelans, and other nationalities. 1
  • Without Hispanics, Florida's population growth from 2000 to 2012 falls to 9.6%, rather than 17.6%.
  • Take Miami-Dade out of the equation -- both Hispanics and non-Hispanics -- and Florida's Hispanic population drops to just under 16%, below the national level of 16.4%. Subtract Broward as well, and Florida looks like Connecticut or Illinois.
  • Hispanics make up 13.9% of active registered voters in Florida -- 476,000 are registered Republicans and 645,000 are Democrats. Republicans saw a 7% increase in Hispanics registering for the GOP in Florida from the 2008 to 2012 general elections, but Democrats posted a 26% gain, according to Florida election records. Hispanics expressing no party affiliation increased 38%. Hispanics account for 11% of registered GOP voters, 13.5% of registered Democrats and 20% of no-party affiliation voters.
  • A quarter of a million Florida public school students fall into the "English language learner" designation -- foreign-born or from a household where English isn't spoken -- a number that has increased 27.8% over the last decade, according to the state Department of Education. Most of them -- 77% -- are Hispanic. Roughly one in four Hispanic students falls under the English language learner umbrella.
  • In 2012, the purchasing power of Hispanics in Florida boomed to $212.8 billion, up 980% since 1990. Hispanics account for 29% of consumer buying power in Florida (Source: Selig Center for Economic Growth, University of Georgia, Terry College of Business) and are the fastest-growing consumer segment in Florida, says University of Florida's Philip J. Williams.

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1 Florida International University, Metropolitan Center, “Florida’s Changing Demographics: Hispanic Political Influence”

Eugenio R. Torres, Founder of Hispanic Unity
shares HUF’s early years in his:
MEMORIES of FLORIDA

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Hispanic Unity of Florida: Client Stories

Hispanic Unity was founded more than 34 years ago by community leaders to ease the acculturation transition for newcomers from other nations. Today this nonprofit provides assistance through 12 programs and 30+ services, in four languages, to Broward's diverse community. Hispanic Unity remains the county's largest agency dedicated to the immigrant population, providing them with the tools they need to build a new life. In 2015, the agency served 17,000+ clients, from toddlers to adults.