Brooklyn has a fairly stable population, not too young, not too old – but varying greatly in ethnic background.
One can reach these conclusions by reading reports from the Census Bureau’s recently releasedAmerican Community Survey, which is now online. The survey is organized by congressional district(C.D.), of which Brooklyn has six.
Of these six, two are completely in Brooklyn – Rep. Hakeem Jeffries’ 8th C.D. in the central and southeasten part of the borough and Rep. Yvette Clarke’s 9th C.D., which stretches from Crown Heights south to Sheepshead Bay. Rep. Nydia Velazquez’s 7th C.D. is mainly in western and northern Brooklyn, but has Manhattan’s Lower East Side and a small area of Ridgewood, Queens.
Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s 10th C.D. is mainly in Manhattan, but also includes the Brooklyn areas of Sunset Park, Borough Park and Bensonhurst. Rep. Michael Grimm’s 11th C.D. is mainly in Staten Island, but also includes large parts of Bay Ridge, Bath Beach and Gravesend.
Finally, Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s 12th C.D. is mainly in Manhattan and Queens, but also includes Greenpoint and East Williamsburg.
The survey breaks population down by race, ethnic group, ancestry, disability and mobility. It does not include data on employment or occupation – those are included in other surveys.
Judging by the results of the survey, most of Brooklyn is young (although not too young) or middle-aged. In all six districts, the three largest age ranges are 25 to 34 years, 35 to 44 years, and 45 to 54 years. Clearly, the days when many Brooklyn neighborhoods were filled overwhelmingly with seniors, with few young people moving in, are over.
As far as race is concerned, black is the largest category in Jeffries’ and Clarke’s districts, while white is the largest category in the other four. In four districts – Nadler’s, Velazquez’s, Grimm’s and Maloney’s – Asians are the second-largest group.
The survey also counts the number of people who identify as “Hispanic or Latino,” but add that this category can be “of any race.” The largest concentration of Latinos, 129,696, is found in Jeffries’ 8th C.D. The smallest, 87,723, is found in Clarke’s neighboring 9th C.D.
The true diversity of Brooklyn can be seen is in the “ancestry” portion of the data. For example, the three main ancestry groups in Maloney’s district are Irish, Italian and Polish. Greenpoint, a traditional Polish-American and Polish immigrant stronghold, is part of her 12th C.D.
In Jeffries’ 8th C.D., the largest ancestry group is West Indian, at 111,666, with all others far behind. The largest ancestry group in Clarke’s 9th C.D. is also West Indian, at 172,547, followed by “Ukrainian” at 7,853. Clarke’s district includes many areas with large numbers of immigrants from the former Soviet Union, and many of them are from the Ukraine.
The largest ancestry groups in the remaining three districts — Grimm’s 11th C.D., Velazquez’ 7th C.D. and Nadler’s 10th C.D. – are Irish, Italian and Russian. “Russian” can include American Jews of Eastern European descent, most of whom came from the old Russian empire, or more recent immigrants of the Soviet and post-Soviet eras. Most likely, it includes both.
One of the last questions on the survey was whether the occupants had lived in the same house or apartment last year. In all districts, the majority said “yes.”
The largest differences were found in Grimm’s district, where, out of 724,434 people, only 659,881 had lived at the same address the previous year; and in Nadler’s district, where, out of a total population of 716,172, 602,218 had lived at the same address the previous year.