2010 Census Shows the White Population Has Become More Diverse

Written by: Lindsay Hixson, Bradford B. Hepler and Myoung Ouk Kim

The largest race group in the United States – the White population – has become more diverse over the past decade as evidenced by the growth of Hispanics identifying as White and the growth of Whites identifying with multiple races.


Hispanics Comprised Three-Fourths of the Growth of the White Population

The White alone-or-in-combination population increased by 7 percent, from 216.9 million in 2000 to 231.0 million in 2010.  Most of this growth was a result of the increase in the White Hispanic population, which grew by 56 percent between 2000 and 2010.  Of the 231.0 million White alone-or-in-combination population in the 2010 Census, 29.2 million or 13 percent reported they were Hispanic, up from 9 percent in 2000.

Whites who reported one race and identified as Hispanic accounted for 70 percent of the growth of the White alone-or-in-combination population.  Multiple-race Whites who identified as Hispanic accounted for another 4 percent of the growth of the White alone-or-in-combination population.  Thus, Hispanics accounted for about three-fourths of the increase in the White alone-or-in-combination population.

On the other hand, non-Hispanic single-race Whites contributed to only 16 percent of the growth of the White alone-or-in-combination population from 2000 to 2010. Non-Hispanic multiple-race Whites accounted for the remaining 10 percent of the growth.

White Multiple-Race Reporting Increased by 37 Percent

The multiple-race White population increased by 2 million, an increase of 37 percent in the last decade.  The majority of the increase of the multiple-race White population was driven by the growth of two race combinations.  Over half of this growth was attributed to White and Black, and over one-third was due to White and Asian.  The White and Black population grew by 134 percent or over 1 million people.  The White and Asian population increased by 87 percent or more than 750,000 people over the decade.

For more information on the White population, see the 2010 Census Brief, The White Population: 2010.

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