AAPI Fund Collaborates with UCLA LPPI on a New Data Brief about the Rising AAPI Latino Population in the U.S.

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The new analysis provides insight into the diverse and growing AAPI Latino demographic

LOS ANGELES (May 22, 2024) – The UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute in partnership with the AAPI Civic Engagement Fund released a new Latino Data Hub brief that uncovers the diverse experiences and challenges faced by different racial groups within the U.S. Latino population. The data brief, titled “AAPI Latinos in the United States: An Overview of the Growing Demographic,” uses data from the Latino Data Hub, which draws from the 2022 pooled 5-year American Community Survey (ACS). This brief highlights the unique experiences of AAPI Latinos across the country.

Between 2000 to 2022, the AAPI Latino community in the U.S. has seen exponential growth, more than doubling from 350,000 to 886,000. However, this demographic shift often remains overshadowed by the larger AAPI and Latino groups, underscoring the need for a shift in our understanding and recognition of the rich diversity within our society, including the unique identity of AAPI Latinos.

“As a first-generation AAPI Latino, the AAPI Latino community is not just a statistic. We are a vibrant tapestry of cultures, histories, and identities,” said Kevin Kandamby, co-author and UCLA LPPI Contributor, who is MexiLankan (Mexican and Sri Lankan). “Our growth and diversity are significant yet often overlooked. It’s time we shed light on this vibrant part of our society, particularly during Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month.”

The AAPI Latino population has distinct characteristics compared to the overall Latino and AAPI communities and, socioeconomically, is more closely in line with the overall U.S. population with a few notable trends.

  • California is home to the most AAPI Latinos, with 302,000 AAPI Latinos residing in the state, one-third of the total AAPI population living in the United States. 
  • AAPI Latinos are very young, with close to half under age 18.
  • Very few (5%) AAPI Latinos are noncitizens, lower than the rate of the Latino (19%) and AAPI (26%) populations. 
  • Two-thirds of AAPI Latinos speak English only at home, with another one-quarter bilingual.
  • AAPI Latinos have similar levels of formal education as the overall adult population but lag behind the AAPI population.
  • AAPI Latinos’ poverty and low-income rates are on par with those of the total population and slightly higher than the AAPI population.
  • The homeownership rate of AAPI Latinos lags behind both the total U.S. and the AAPI populations.

“It’s essential to remember that Latinos are not a monolithic group,” said Jie Zong co-author and UCLA LPPI senior research analyst. “Different racial groups within the Latino population, including Afro-Latinos, AAPI Latinos, and other mixed Latinos, have unique experiences and face distinct challenges.”

EunSook Lee, Executive Director at AAPI Civic Engagement Fund added, “As we close out AANHPI Heritage Month in May, let’s take a moment to reflect and uplift the diverse experiences within our communities. Let’s carry this spirit of recognition and understanding beyond this month, ensuring we create an inclusive and supportive environment for all.”

Read the full data brief here.


About UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute

The UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute is a non-partisan research institute that seeks to inform, engage, and empower Latinos through innovative research and policy analysis. LPPI aims to promote equitable and inclusive policies that address the needs of the Latino community and advance social justice. For more info:

About the AAPI Civic Engagement Fund

The AAPI Civic Engagement Fund is one of the largest funders of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) movement building organizations and the only one of its kind that focuses investment in state and local organizations doing on-the-ground work. The AAPI Fund’s mission is to foster a culture of civic participation in AAPI communities through grantmaking, building movement capacity, and conducting research. The AAPI Fund’s grantees serve over 57 ethnic groups and constituencies that include women, youth, seniors, multi-status immigrants and families and low-income, queer and trans, and faith-based communities. Over ninety percent of the groups are led by AAPI women. For more info: 

This entry was posted on May 23, 2024