Latino community on the rise

The news: Latinos have surpassed African Americans as the largest minority group in Illinois, according to new estimates in the 2010 Census. Behind the news: Latinos could become Chicago’s largest racial or ethnic group by the year 2020, if growth trends from the previous decade are repeated between 2010 and 2020, according to U.S. Census data analyzed by The Chicago Reporter. At the same time, Latinos could surpass black people as the largest minority group in Cook County. Since the 1980 Census, the population of black and white people in Cook County has shrunk 5.5 percent and 44 percent, respectively, as the overall population of the county is also shrinking. Conversely, the Latino population in the county increased 60 percent.

Disabled minorities out of work

The news: Illinois’ monthly unemployment rate dropped consecutively in 2010 starting in March, and a recent survey by the Employer Associations of America shows that hiring will continue to increase this year throughout the state. Behind the news: Despite the optimism, disabled people in Illinois continue to struggle to find employment at staggering rates. The numbers are amplified when compounded by race. Among those in the workforce, 16 percent of disabled people are unemployed compared with 9 percent of people who are not disabled. But among all disabled people–”both in and out of the workforce–”nearly 2 of 3 people are without a job.