Tuesday, January 25, 2005

English language decline

An increasing number of immigrants in New York are not proficient in English:

The number of New Yorkers who have trouble speaking English rose to more than a quarter of the city's population between 1990 and 2000 -- or more than one-point-five (M) million people, the city reports. The increase was about 30 percent.

About half of those with problems speaking English live in homes where there is no proficient English speaker. A quarter live in houses where only a child has proficiency.

Salvo's statistics are based on census information and immigration surveys where respondents said they spoke English less than "very well."

The data suggest that the immigrant groups with the highest number of births -- Dominicans, Mexicans and Chinese -- have the highest rates of difficulty with English. Up to 76 percent of those groups report problems.

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