For many immigrants, the citizenship and naturalization process can be confusing and difficult. Those reasons may turn some people off from trying to navigate the lengthy process. However, a new report from the Census Bureau shows that the number of Americans who identified themselves as Asian has surged approximately 46 percent between the years 2000 and 2010. This number far surpasses the 10 percent rate of the United States population growth in its entirety during the same period. While the daunting citizenship and naturalization process may deter some from coming to the United States, the number of Asian Americans in this country has risen more than 17 million during those designated ten years.
The state of California has the nation’s largest Asian American population, numbering as high as six million people. California’s Asian population showed growth during the first decade of this century as well, but other states have seen an influx of Asian immigrants as well. Over those 10 years, the Asian population has risen in every state in America except for Hawaii, as Asians already represent the majority in that state.
A professor at UCLA attributes the rise in the Asian population to education and economic reasons. Other Asians immigrate to reunite with their families and some claim refugee status. Throughout the years, the population may have also increased because of Asian immigrant’s children, yet immigration itself is said to be the main reason for the population explosion.
Other minority groups also rose in population between 2000 and 2010. The Latino population grew to 43 percent, African Americans increased by 15 percent and those who identified themselves as white grew by seven percent. The Chinese are the largest among national groups with over four million, followed closely by 3.4 million Filipinos, and Asian Indians with 3.2 million.
Although the citizenship and naturalization process can be difficult, Asian immigrants are finding homes in California and throughout the western portion of the United States and have since spread out to other regions as well. With all of the discussion about immigration issues throughout this election year, it is heartening to see that significant portions of people from all different areas of the globe have either gained or are working toward achieving legal status.
Source: Los Angeles Times, “Asians were fastest-growing U.S. group in last decade, census finds,” Rebecca Trounson, March 23, 2012