US White Population Declines and Generation ‘Z-Plus’ is Minority White, Census Shows

By on July 10, 2018

From Brookings:  The U.S. Census Bureau’s release of race and age statistics for 2017 points to two noteworthy milestones about the nation’s increasingly aging white and growing diverse population. First, for the first time since the Census Bureau has released these annual statistics, they show an absolute decline in the nation’s white non-Hispanic population—accelerating a phenomenon that was not projected to occur until the next decade.

Second, the new numbers show that for the first time there are more children who are minorities than who are white, at every age from zero to nine. This means we are on the cusp of seeing the first minority white generation, born in 2007 and later, which perhaps we can dub Generation “Z-Plus.”

Together these new data suggest that a signature feature of U.S. demographic change in the 21st century is the aging and decline of the white population, along with population growth among young minorities to counterbalance the trend.

America’s white population has been increasing since the first census was taken in 1790. Table 1 shows the change in the non-Hispanic white population using data from the censuses of 1970 to 2010, and annual population estimates for 2011 to 2017, based on the recent release. These new numbers show, for the first time, an absolute decline in the nation’s white population of more than 9,000 whites between 2015 and 2016 and more than 31,000 whites between 2016 and 2017. (These new estimates revised earlier census estimates, which showed white gains between 2015 and 2016.)

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