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Census report: Wisconsin has third highest Hmong population in U.S.

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Hmong new years celebration
Hmong new years celebration

UNDATED (WSAU) Wisconsin has almost 50,000 Hmong residents, the third-largest population in the country behind Minnesota and California. That’s according to a review of 2010 Census figures by the Hmong Studies Journal of Saint Paul.

Wisconsin was among the first places where refugees started settling in the late 1970’s, after many served side-by-side with U-S forces in Vietnam. Today the Wisconsin Hmong has its greatest numbers in Wausau, Eau Claire, La Crosse, Appleton, Green Bay, Sheboygan, Madison, and Milwaukee.

Nationally, there were over 260,000 Hmong-Americans in 2010 – and over half are now American-born. Mark Pfeifer, the editor of the Hmong Studies Journal, says Hmong residents have made considerable advancements over the last 30 years in their educational, social, and economic plight. But they still face unique challenges which include poverty. The national Hmong poverty rate in 2010 was 25-percent, compared to 11-percent for Americans as a whole.

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