Illinois’ Latino population grew by 33 percent over the last decade – but that’s one of the slowest rates in the nation.  Latinos in Illinois total 2.03 million – 16 percent of the state population, according to census data crunched by the Illinois Latino Family Commission. The Illinois Latino population grew by 497,295 over the last decade. The 33 percent growth rate places Illinois 47th in the rate of growth of this group. 
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It seems immigration from Latin-American countries to Illinois has leveled off, says Layla Suleiman Gonzalez, director of the commission.  “The Latinos have grown by 33 percent in the last 10 years, according to the census, so that’s almost half a million Latinos, but the largest reason for that growth is fertility. It’s births,” she said at a presentation Wednesday at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The Latino population in Illinois is 56 percent U.S.-born, and now represents 23 percent of all births in Illinois. It is a young population, with a median age of 26 vs. a statewide median age of 36.
The top cities by Latino population growth were Springfield (112 percent), Elgin (100 percent), Peoria (80 percent), Naperville (79 percent) and Rockford (55 percent). The top cities by Latino percentage are Cicero (87 percent), Berwyn (59 percent), Waukegan (57 percent), Carpentersville (50 percent) and Round Lake Beach and Bensenville (48 percent).
Gonzalez mentioned Rantoul, Beardstown, Collinsville, Rock Island, Anna and Carbondale as places where the Latino population is becoming significant.   In Illinois, Mexicans and their descendants represent 83 percent of the Latino population.
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