For the generation of Americans not yet old enough to drive, the demographic future has arrived.
For the first time, nonwhites and Hispanics were a majority of people under age 16 in 2019, an expected demographic shift that will grow over the coming decades, according to figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau on Thursday.
“We are browning from bottom up in our age structure,” said William Frey, a senior fellow at The Brookings Institution. “This is going to be a diversified century for the United States, and it’s beginning with this youngest generation.”
At the same time, the number of non-Hispanic whites in the U.S. has gotten smaller in the past decade as deaths surpassed births in this aging demographic, according to the Census Bureau population estimates.
Since 2010, the number of whites who aren’t Hispanic had dropped by more than 16,600 people. But the decline has been escalating in the past three years, with the number of non-Hispanic whites dropping by more than a half million people from 2016 to 2019, according to the Census Bureau population estimates.
In 2019, a little under 40% of the total U.S. population was either nonwhite or Hispanic. Non-Hispanic whites are expected to be a minority of the U.S. population in about 25 years.