Nearly All of California’s Crises Are Worse in Latino Communities, New Report Says

An undated image shows a man sitting outside a grocery store in Firebaugh, a rural farming community with a population of about 7,000 people, has struggled with higher unemployment than many other parts of California. (Credit: Bethany Mollenkof / Los Angeles Times)

An undated image shows a man sitting outside a grocery store in Firebaugh, a rural farming community with a population of about 7,000 people, has struggled with higher unemployment than many other parts of California. (Credit: Bethany Mollenkof / Los Angeles Times)

Five years ago this month, the demographic face of California changed for the first time in its modern history. Latinos became the state’s largest ethnic group — gaining a newfound dominance, though one that had been expected for decades.

But a new report offers a sober look at a different marker of distinction, one that shows Latinos fare worse than their fellow Californians on nearly every big quandary the state faces, even as its economy grows. And while things have improved in California, they have improved less for Latinos than for almost everyone else.

“There are just these huge gaps,” said Mindy Romero, director of the California Civic Engagement Project at USC. “There’s a lot of work to be done.”

Romero’s research was published last week by the California Latino Economic Institute, a nonprofit that includes a broad cross section of business, education and government leaders. In example after example, the 43-page report chronicles the struggle of Latinos to keep up with white and Asian American residents. African Americans in California have failed to keep pace too but are a much smaller part of the state’s population.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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