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Florida Demographics

 

As of 2005, Florida has an estimated population of 17,789,864, which is an increase of 404,434, or 2.3%, from the prior year and an increase of 1,807,040, or 11.3%, since the year 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 246,058 people (that is 1,115,565 births minus 869,507 deaths) and an increase due to net migration of 1,585,704 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 528,085 people, and migration within the country produced a net increase of 1,057,619 people. 


Race and ancestry

  • Florida Population Density Map White 65.4%

  • Hispanic (including Whites and Blacks) 16.8%

  • Black 14.6%

  • Asian 1.7%

  • Native American 0.3%

  • Mixed Race 2.4%

Over 16% of Florida's population was Hispanic. The largest reported ancestries in the 2000 Census were German (11.8%), Irish (10.3%), English (9.2%), American (8%) and Italian (6.3%).

African Americans and/or Blacks, who during the cotton and sugar plantation era of the legalized slavery days, and during the post-Civil War reconstruction era, made up fully 50% of the state's population, have a large presence in northern Florida and in the cities of Jacksonville, Gainesville, and Fort Lauderdale. In addition, there is a large Haitian-descended population in Miami.

Florida's large and diverse Hispanic community consists particularly of Cubans in Miami and Tampa; large Puerto Rican populations are present in Tampa and Orlando; and Central American migrant workers are largely present in inland West-Central and South Florida. The Hispanic community continues to grow more affluent and mobile: between the years of 2000 and 2004, Lee County in southwest Florida, a largely suburban jurisdiction, had the fastest Hispanic population growth rate of any county in the United States.

Whites of all ethnicities are present in all areas of the state. Particularly, those of British ancestry are present in large numbers in the coastal cities; there is a large German population in Southwest Florida; a sizeable and historic Italian community is present in the Miami area; and white Floridians of longer-present generations are largely present in the culturally southern areas of inland and northern Florida. Native white Floridians, especially those who have descended from long-time Florida families, are affectionately referred to as "Florida Crackers."


Languages

As of 2000, 76.9% of Florida residents age 5 and older speak English at home and 16.5% speak Spanish. French is the third most spoken language at 2.2%, followed by German at 0.6% and Italian at 0.4%.

Article II, Section 9 of the Florida Constitution provides that "English is the official language of the State of Florida." This was adopted in 1988 by a vote following an Initiative Petition.


Religion

Florida is mostly Protestant, with a growing Roman Catholic community due to immigration. There is also a sizable Jewish community in some parts of Florida which makes Florida unique among Southern states because no other Southern state has a large Jewish community. Florida's current religious affiliations are shown in the table below:

  • Christian 82%

  • Protestant 54%

  • Baptist 19%

  • Methodist 6%

  • Presbyterian 4%

  • Episcopal 3%

  • Lutheran 3%

  • Pentecostal 3%

  • Other Protestant 16%

  • Roman Catholic 26%

  • Other Christian 2%

  • Jewish 4%

  • Other Religions 1%

  • Non-Religious 13%

 

 

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