NWA's increasing diverse population sparks new services

Posted: March 27, 2016 at 1 a.m.

Patrick Boaz saw a language barrier keeping elderly residents from knowing what was happening in the community, so he started a Marshallese newspaper.

Growing diversity

Northwest Arkansas continues becoming more diversified as the overall population grows. The metropolitan statistical area’s population passed 500,000 people in 2014 after more than doubling in 24 years. The Northwest Arkansas metropolitan statistical area includes Benton, Washington and Madison counties and McDonald County, Mo.

Benton and Washington counties were 96 percent non-Hispanic white in 1990, dropping to 74 percent in 2014. The Hispanic population grew from 1 percent to 16 percent in that same time frame.

The Hispanic population is not the only one to grow over that 24-year time span. Asians and Pacific Islanders went from less than 1 percent to 3 percent and blacks increased from 1 percent to 3 percent.

Source: Staff report

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