A report released today by the U.S. Census Bureau shows that the minority population has changed significantly in the past seven years. While the overall population of the city has increased about 200,000 between 2000 and 2006, the African-American population is actually on the decline. The city's black population dropped more than 40,000 during the period while the Hispanic and Asian population both increased more than 90,000 during the same period.

According to The Sun, public officials and demographers attribute the decline in black residents to increased housing costs, changing patterns in immigration, and black families moving to the South. The same Census report shows that the New York metropolitan region (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut) lost nearly 250,000 white residents and that The Bronx lost almost 11% of its white population while Manhattan's white population increased almost 9%. Since 2005, Asians have been the only minority group with increases in population in every county in the metropolitan area. The numbers of blacks declined in all five boroughs, except Staten Island, and the Hispanic population increased in Queens, Staten Island and The Bronx.

Overall, from 2000-2006, the minority population in the metropolitan area increased in every county except three (Orleans County in Upstate NY, New York County, and Kings County). During those years, the minority population in Manhattan decreased 1.5%, Brooklyn decreased 0.2%, Queens increased 3%, The Bronx increased 2%, and Staten Island increased 4.8%.

Photo by U.S. Census Bureau