Pennsylvania Census Data Reflects Changing Demographic Landscape
According to recent data from the US Census Bureau, Pennsylvania has struggled to maintain its population over the past year, while other parts of the country have seen strong population growth. Some people suggest that the slow growth in immigration is the main factor behind this population decline.
Census data reflects changing demographic landscape
Census data indicates that more than 73% of counties in the United States experienced natural population decline in 2021, compared to 45.5% in 2019 and 55.5% in 2020. The term “natural decline” s applies when there are more deaths than births in a given country. area for a certain period of time. Also considering the migration patterns of a region, it is possible to discern the demographic trends of that region.
Areas in Texas, Florida, Arizona, California and Utah saw the strongest growth in 2021, but Pennsylvania saw population decline. As a result of the pandemic, the Commonwealth’s total population has shrunk by around 25,000 people. The Commonwealth recorded more deaths than births, and migration to the region failed to compensate for the loss of population caused by the loss of lives.
The greatest population loss occurred in metropolitan areas of Pennsylvania, with Philadelphia County losing 25,000 and Allegheny County losing 10,600. Suburban counties saw the greatest growth: 4,000 people for Chester and Montgomery counties, 3,600 people for suburban Philadelphia, and 2,900 people for Cumberland County, a suburb east of Harrisburg. Overall, the eastern half of the state has seen greater growth than the west.
Census data provides more than just a snapshot of demographic trends in the United States; in fact, 2020 census data will determine the distribution of hundreds of billions of dollars from the federal government to state and local governments over the next decade. These federal dollars will provide housing, food assistance, education, medical services and public transportation to countless Americans.
Impact of immigration policy on population growth
Recent census data likely reflects the lingering effects of the pandemic rather than a lack of population growth in the United States. That said, the pandemic came late in the tenure of an openly anti-immigrant administration. Certainly, his policies have contributed, at least in part, to the lack of migration to the country in 2021. In fact, as observed in a Tweeter by Derek Thompson, host of the Plain English podcast, “if you compare 2016 and 2021, the collapse [in] immigration is even more responsible for the decline in population growth than excess mortality. Savage.”
In Pennsylvania, as elsewhere in the country, immigration is driving population growth. As noted in a recent post on this blog, the growth of black immigrants has spurred population growth in Philadelphia since the year 2000. However, the nature and sustainability of this growth will depend on an immigration policy that welcomes those who seek to enter the United States.
©2022 Norris McLaughlin PA, All Rights ReservedNational Law Review, Volume XII, Number 130