Latinos are the fastest growing population group in Rhode Island, but they lack the skills and education needed to get ahead. That’s the major finding of a new study published by the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University.
Latinos constitute about 13 percent of Rhode Island’s population, a number that is expected to grow over the next decade. But they are ill-equipped for the 21st century workforce according to Ana Cano Morales, director of the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University and author of a new report on Latinos in the Ocean State.
"Thirty-five percent of Rhode Island Latinos which are aged 25 and over don’t have a high school diploma or an equivalent of a high school diploma. So if you don’t have a high school diploma at the very least, that’s 35 percent of our population, that’s a problem," said Morales.
The Latino Policy Institute study also blew a hole in the misconception that most Latinos don’t speak English. The study found that 72 percent of Rhode Island Latinos in the workforce speak English exclusively or well.
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