A recent U.S. Census Bureau data release explores in detail the variety of languages spoken within homes in the United States. It reveals that 20 percent of the population 5 years of age and older are using one of at least 350 different languages other than English as their primary means of communication in the household.
In Idaho, 10.4 percent of the population 5 years of age and older uses a primary language other than English in the household, ranking 28th in the nation among the 50 states and Washington, D.C. Continue reading
The escalating debate over national immigration reform has put the workplace and the classroom on the front line, especially when it comes to communication. English as a second language has significant ramifications in productivity and safety.
In Idaho, the vast majority of people for whom English is a second language speak Spanish. The five Refugee Centers located around the state track more language diversity although the numbers of these immigrants remains comparatively small to Hispanics.
Contributing to the diversity yet still trailing the Spanish speakers considerably is Other Indo-European languages, the next largest group of non-English speakers. The changing global politics is showcased in the differing top five refugee languages in 2005 versus 2011 with Nepalese taking the majority lead over Turkish.