Kentucky

The Bluegrass State
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State Highlights
  • Total Latino Population

    149,006

  • Median Age of Latinos

    23.7

  • Median Income of Latinos 16+

    $33,991

  • # of Latino Registered Voters

    34,000

  • Latinos Without Health Insurance

    28.4%

  • Latino Homeownership

    32.7%

  • Latinos as % of All Under 18

    5.6%

Untitled-1

From 2000 to 2014, the Latino population in Kentucky increased by 145.4% and accounted for 24.2% of the state’s total population growth. 1

In 2014, Kentucky’s Latino population totaled 149,006 and constituted 3.4% of the state’s total population. 2

Much of the Latino population is concentrated in Louisville and Lexington. 3 The two counties with the largest Latino populations were Jefferson and Fayette. 4

In 2014, Kentucky’s Latino citizen voting age population numbered 55,000. 5

Furthermore, Latino registered voters totaled 34,000 and constituted 1.5% of all registered voters in the state. 6

Approximately 67.6% of Latino registered voters cast ballots during the November 2014 elections.

2015

In Kentucky, KY H79 provides access to approved programs for high school students who are either refugees or legal aliens. These services last until the student either graduates or turns 21. 7

2014

Kentucky’s KY H128 allows immigrants who are legal residents of this country to apply for a gun permit. They must be able to prove their immigration status and provide evidence of a government issued form of identification. 8

67.4% of Latinos were citizens of the United States (59.8% were native born and 7.6% were naturalized). 9

40.2% of Latinos were foreign born. 10

61.8% of Latinos 5-years of age and older spoke Spanish. 11

Of Latino Spanish-speakers 5-years of age and older, 44.3% spoke English “very well”, 25.3% spoke English “well”, 23.6% spoke English “not well”, and 6.9% spoke English “not at all.” 12

The median age of Latinos was 23.7 years compared to 40.1 years for Whites. 13

39.1% of Latinos were under 18 years of age compared to 21.8% of Whites. 14

Latinos comprise 5.6% of all persons under the age of 18. 15

Of Latinos 25-years of age and older, 34.9% had less than a high school diploma (compared to 15.4% of Whites), 28.8% had a high school diploma, GED, or alternative credential (compared to 34.2% of Whites), 20.1% had some college or an Associate’s degree (compared to 28.0% of Whites), 7.7% had a Bachelor’s degree (compared to 13.2% of Whites), and 8.6% had a Graduate degree (compared to 9.2% of Whites). 16

Median household incomes totaled $33,991 for Latinos and $45,020 for Whites (in 2014 inflation-adjusted dollars). 17

28.4% of Latinos lacked health insurance compared to 7.5% of Whites. 18

32.7% of Latino households were owner occupied (compared to 69.4% of White households) and 67.3% were renter occupied (compared to 30.6% of White households). 19

7.7% of Latinos were unemployed compared to 6.9% of Whites. 20

The number of Latino-owned businesses grew 151.5% over a 10-year period, going from 2,094 in 2002 to 5,266 in 2012. 21

In 2012, receipts for Latino-owned businesses totaled $1.9 million, representing an increase of 118.6% from 2007. 22 23

In 2012, Latino-owned businesses employed 14,674 people with an annual payroll of $369,059. 24

In 2015, the Latino purchasing power in Kentucky totaled $3.1 billion. 25

From 2000 to 2014, Kentucky’s immigrant population increased 101.9%, growing from 80,271 in 2000 to 162,040 in 2014 (immigrant share of 3.7% in 2014). 26

In 2014, 22.1% of immigrants living in Kentucky entered the U.S. before 1990, 21.6% entered between 1990 and 1999, 38.4% entered between 2000 and 2009, and 3.7% entered after 2010. 27

According to a U.S. Census Bureau 2014 estimate, 39.1% of immigrants living in Kentucky were born in Latin America, 31.6% were born in Asia, 14.0% were born in Europe, 12.3% were born in Africa, and 3.0% were born in other regions. 28

36.3% of all immigrants in Kentucky were naturalized U.S. citizens in 2014. 29

In 2012, 52,974 people (or 2.3% of all registered voters in Kentucky) were newly naturalized citizens or U.S. born children of immigrants. 30

In 2014, foreign-born workers totaled 102,838 and made-up 4.2% of Kentucky’s workforce. 31

Between 2009 and 2013, 27,000 undocumented immigrants held permanent jobs in Kentucky, representing 68% of the undocumented civilian population. 32 In 2008, The Perryman Group found that removing undocumented immigrants from Kentucky would result in a $1.7 billion loss in economic activity and a $756.8 million loss in gross state product, as well as a loss of 12,059 jobs. 33

Undocumented immigrants in Kentucky paid $38.8 million in state and local taxes in 2012. 34

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