Demographics

Arkansas’ population is growing, aging, and becoming slightly more diverse in terms of race and ethnic background.

Arkansas’ population increased by 12% from 2000 to 2016, in comparison to 15% growth for the nation as a whole. Arkansas’ main years of population growth were from 2005 to 2008, with recent years having less growth. This growth has been unevenly distributed across counties within the state, with the majority of counties losing population over this time period.

Though still majority white, Arkansas is becoming slightly more diverse in terms of race and ethnicity. In 2016, Arkansans identified as 79% white, 16% black, 7% Hispanic, 2% Asian, 2% two or more races, 1% Native American, and 0.3% (9,000 individuals) Pacific Islander. Pacific Islanders and Hispanics were the groups that saw the largest percent growth in their populations from 2000 to 2016. Counties vary widely in their racial and ethnic diversity, ranging from Phillips County, which is majority minority, and has only 36% of residents identifying as white, to Baxter County (among others) which has 97% of residents identifying as white.

Arkansas is getting older, with increases in both its 60-84 and its 85+ age categories from 2000 to 2016. In 2016, 22% of its population was over age 60 (in contrast to 18% in 2000). Within the state, only 25% of counties saw their numbers of children and young adults (those under age 20) increase.





INDICATORS TREND | STATE
Grade 3 Reading Increasing
Grade 8 Math Increasing
Graduation Rate Increasing
Remediation Rate Decreasing
Adults with a High School Degree Increasing
Adults with a Bachelor's Degree or Higher Increasing
Infant Mortality Decreasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing
Overweight or Obese Students Increasing
Student Drug Usage Decreasing
Overweight or Obese Adults Increasing
Physically Inactive Adults Increasing
Smoking Rate Decreasing
Flouridated Water Increasing
Insurance Coverage Rates Increasing
Oral Health Increasing
Life Expectancy Increasing
Routine Check-ups Increasing
Births to Teens Decreasing
Female-headed Households Increasing
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Elderly Living in Poverty Decreasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Unemployment Rate Maintaining
Homeownership Rate Decreasing
Child Abuse and Neglect Decreasing
Access to Financial Services Not Applicable
Food Insecurity Decreasing
Incarceration Rate Increasing
Homelessness Decreasing
Change in Total Jobs Increasing
Housing Affordability - Owning Maintaining
Housing Affordability - Renting Increasing
Voter Participation Rate Increasing
Charitable Giving Maintaining
Volunteering Decreasing
Group Participation Increasing
Connection to Neighbors Decreasing
Local Voting Decreasing
Change in Population Increasing
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age Not Applicable


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