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Saginaw County

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The Census asks questions about language use at home to locate groups of people who speak a language other than English. Their isolation or integration into a primarily English speaking community can be determined by their ability to speak English proficiently.

Language Spoken at Home, 1990-2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Only English 183,408 93.74% 183,338 93.61%
Spanish 6,355 3.25% 7,199 3.68%
Other Indo-European* 4,798 2.45% 3,598 1.84%
Asian Language** 821 0.42% 1,151 0.59%
Other 278 0.14% 572 0.29%
Total Population Age 5+ 195,660 100.00% 195,858 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,957 27.18%
Other Indo-European* 842 23.40%
Asian Language** 500 43.44%
Other Language 175 30.59%
Total 3,474 1.77%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,996 31.41%
Other Indo-European* 1,337 27.87%
Asian Language** 337 41.05%
Other Language 107 38.49%
Total 3,777 1.93%

* "Other Indo-European" excludes English and Spanish. "Indo-European" is not synonymous with "European." French, German, Hindi, and Persian are all classified as Indo-European. Hungarian, on the other hand, is lumped into "Other Language."

** "Asian Language" includes languages indigenous to Asia and Pacific islands areas that are not also Indo-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Telugu, and Hawaiian are all classified here.

Also note that ability to speak English "very well" is based on the self-assessment of those responding to Census questions, not on a test of language ability.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

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