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Rockland 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 191,765 77.83% 185,673 70.06%
Spanish 13,564 5.51% 24,218 9.14%
Other Indo-European* 31,904 12.95% 39,869 15.04%
Asian Language** 6,314 2.56% 10,343 3.90%
Other 2,847 1.16% 4,899 1.85%
Total Population Age 5+ 246,394 100.00% 265,002 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 11,391 47.04%
Other Indo-European* 16,382 41.09%
Asian Language** 3,820 36.93%
Other Language 1,337 27.29%
Total 32,930 12.43%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 5,955 43.90%
Other Indo-European* 12,885 40.39%
Asian Language** 2,996 47.45%
Other Language 701 24.62%
Total 22,537 9.15%

* "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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