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Eye On Boise

Posts tagged: Idaho Hispanic population

UI study: Huge increase in Hispanic population benefits region

South-Central Idaho’s Hispanic population has grown by 85 percent since 2000, according to a new University of Idaho study, paralleling the dramatic increase in the dairy industry in the region, which employs a large Hispanic workforce. The two-year UI study, funded in part by the Idaho Dairymen’s Association, examined impacts on communities of the demographic and economic changes driven by  the industry’s growth. The study, which was strictly economic and sociological and didn’t examine environmental issues, found largely positive economic and social changes.
“The dairy industry drove population and economic growth, but it’s going beyond agriculture now,” said UI Professor Priscilla Salant. “What it’s meant for communities here, is that communities like Jerome and Gooding which are farming-dependent, they are bucking a national trend. Three-quarters of those kinds of communities around the country are losing population. … That is not happening in the farming-dependent communities that rely on the dairy industry in the state.” Those communities have weathered the recession better than other parts of rural Idaho, the study found. It also found that while child poverty levels remain high in the Magic Valley, health care systems have not been overburdened by the increase in dairy workers; crime hasn’t increased; and schools have seen the biggest impacts. Click below to read more.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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