Map: Political Representation Lags Between Dominican, Puerto Rican Demographic Shifts


New Yorkers of Puerto Rican descent are still the most populous Hispanic group in the five boroughs, but their numbers are declining. (Photo: Oquendo/flickr)

This is an excerpt from an article originally posted on WNYC’s political website, It’s A Free Country.

New York’s Hispanic community became significantly more diverse over the last decade. Unlike many other parts of America, there is no one ethnic group that dominates the Hispanic category here. Yet when you take a look at Hispanic representation in the city’s political landscape, it would seem that Puerto Ricans have the job of speaking for all.

Of the 18 Hispanics in the state legislature, 15 are of Puerto Rican descent.  Senator Adriano Espaillat and Assemblyman Guillermo Linares are the two Dominicans, and freshman Assemblyman Francisco Moya is the first Ecuadorian American to serve in statewide office. Linares and and Espaillat both represent Northern Manhattan, where the Dominican community is largely congregated, and Moya represents Queens.

This isn’t entirely surprising, since Puerto Ricans are still the most numerous Hispanic group in New York, at 723,621 in the five boroughs, and have the longest history here.

But other ethnic groups are flocking to the city, which now has a 29 percent Hispanic population. The Dominican community, in particular, blossomed by 42 percent to reach 576,701, and is expected to surpass Puerto Ricans within the next 15 years.

Read the rest and see a map of the Hispanic population in New York City, on WNYC’s political website, It’s A Free Country.

AboutSarah Kate Kramer
Sarah Kate Kramer first got hooked on collecting stories as a StoryCorps facilitator, then traveled the world with a microphone for a few years before settling down in her hometown of New York City. From 2010-2012 she was the editor of Feet in 2 Worlds and a freelance reporter for WNYC Radio, where she created “Niche Market,” a weekly segment that profiled specialty stores in New York. Sarah is now a producer at Radio Diaries, a non-profit that produces documentaries for NPR and other public radio outlets.