2020 Census shows how Florida’s become more diverse in last 10 years

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FILE – This March 18, 2020 file photo taken in Idaho shows a form for the U.S. Census 2020. (John Roark/The Idaho Post-Register via AP, File)

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Over the past 10 years, Florida’s seen a population boom. In 2010, the Sunshine State was already a large state. Now, it’s grown more diverse as more and more Americans move to the Sunshine State.

In 2010, Florida had 18,801,310 residents. As of 2020, the U.S. Census Bureau says that number grew to 21,538,187, causing the state to gain a congressional seat as the time to redraw the political map arrives. While the population has grown, the state’s racial make-up has also shifted.

The Census Bureau data, when it comes to race and ethnicity, is a lot like the rest of the personal information it holds: Answers are user-submitted. Since the answers are given by each respondent, it’s based on how people describe themselves.

Keeping that in mind, from 2010 to 2020, the United States and Florida’s populations grew more diverse, Florida even more than the U.S.

In 2010, the U.S. was 54.9% diverse according to the Census data available. Florida was 59.1% diverse by comparison. As shown in the data from the 2020 Census, the U.S. was 61.1% diverse, and Florida was 64.1% diverse, still more than the national percentage.

Breaking it down by the races and ethnicities used in the Census Survey, here’s how Florida’s population changed over the past 10 years.

Race/Ethnicity2010 Population percentage2020 Population percentage
White alone (not Hispanic or Latino)57.9%51.5%
Black or African American alone (not Hispanic or Latino)15.2%14.5%
American Indian and Alaska Native alone (not Hispanic or Latino)0.3%0.2%
Asian alone (not Hispanic or Latino)2.4%2.9%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone (not Hispanic or Latino0.1%0.1%
Some Other Race alone (not Hispanic or Latino)0.3%0.6%
Two or more races alone (not Hispanic or Latino)1.5%3.7%
Hispanic or Latino22.5%26.5%
(Source: U.S. Census Bureau)

In the 10 years between the two Censuses, which counties are the most diverse in Florida has also changed, though the three most diverse counties are unchanged.

Ranking2010 Counties2020 Counties
1Broward CountyBroward County
2Orange CountyOrange County
3Hillsborough CountyHillsborough County
4Osceola CountyDuval County
5Hendry CountyPalm Beach County
6Duval CountySt. Lucie County
7DeSoto CountyPolk County
8Hamilton CountySeminole County
9Palm Beach CountyAlachua County
10Gadsden CountyLeon County
(Source: U.S. Census Bureau)

Overall, the census data shows that across Florida, the number of Hispanic or Latino residents has increased over the last decade, while the number of African American and White Floridians has comparatively decreased.

Metropolitan, big city areas and counties have typically been more diverse, historically. The new 2020 Census data shows that the diversity is not only increasing in counties where it was already present, but spreading across as other counties draw in new residents from across Florida, and from around the U.S.

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