November 29, 2007

English Usage Among Hispanics in the United States

V. Citizenship

Citizenship is a marker of attachment to society, and registering to vote even more so. Of foreign-born Hispanics, those who have become naturalized citizens are more likely to speak English very well or pretty well than those who are not citizens (52% versus 25%). At the other extreme, nearly three-quarters (73%) of non-citizens say they speak just a little or no English compared with 46% of naturalized citizens. (Figure 13)

Among Latino registered voters born in other countries, 57% say they speak English very well (42%) or pretty well (15%). They rate their reading ability only slightly lower.