Shafaq News/ According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the United States is home to a population of approximately 3.5 million residents who identify as Middle Eastern or North African (MENA).
Lebanese, Iranian, and Egyptian populations collectively accounted for nearly half of the 3.5 million individuals reporting MENA descent. This classification by the Census Bureau includes a wide range of groups, both Arabic-speaking and non-Arabic-speaking, such as Iranians, Egyptians, Jordanians, as well as ethnic and transnational groups like Assyrians and Kurds.
In 2020, over 3.5 million people identified as MENA alone or in combination with another group, representing approximately 1.5% of the White alone or in combination population. Among this population, more than 2.5 million people identified as MENA alone, making up about 1.2% of the White alone population.
The three largest MENA groups were:
• Lebanese: The largest MENA group, constituting nearly 20% of the MENA alone or in any combination population, with 685,672 people. Lebanese individuals also comprised the second-largest MENA alone group, accounting for 12.9% of the MENA alone population, or 328,137 people.
• Iranian: The largest MENA alone group, with 413,842 people, and the second-largest MENA alone or in any combination group, totaling 568,564 people, which represented over 16% of both the MENA alone and alone or in any combination populations.
• Egyptian: Egyptian individuals constituted the third-largest MENA group, with over 12% of the MENA alone population identifying as Egyptian alone, and 11.3% of the MENA alone or in any combination population identifying as Egyptian alone or in any combination.
Other MENA groups, including "Other Middle Eastern and North African," Arab, Syrian, Iraqi, Israeli, Palestinian, Moroccan, and Jordanian, also had significant populations exceeding 100,000 individuals.
California, Michigan, and New York were the states with the largest MENA populations, each having over 300,000 people reporting MENA alone or in any combination. California notably had the highest number of individuals identifying as MENA alone or in any combination, with 740,219 people, double the count of any other state.
Lebanese and Egyptian groups consistently ranked among the top three largest detailed alone or in any combination groups in states with significant MENA populations, with Palestinian, Chaldean, Iraqi, Assyrian, Syrian, Arab, and Moroccan groups also appearing in various states' top three groups.
Notably, the 2020 Census, delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the implementation of new confidentiality methods, provided the most detailed race and ethnicity data to date. It included counts for approximately 1,550 racial, ethnic, and tribal groups, offering comprehensive insights into the nation's evolving demographic landscape.