More than 12% of the American population identified as Black or African American in 2020. Data from five government entities shows that, on average, Black Americans are more likely to be in a union than the general US population, voted at higher rates in 2020 than in 2016, make up a greater share of Congress than ever before.
Here are 10 facts for a data snapshot of this US population.
The Black or African American population was 39.9 million people in 2020. That’s 12.1% of the 331.4 million people living in the United States that year.
2. People identifying solely as Black or African American were 11.9% of the veteran population between 2015–2019. They were the second-largest racial group of veterans after white Americans. Another 2% of veterans identified as two or more races.
5. Since at least 2000, Black workers have been more likely to belong to a union than US workers overall. In 2019, 11.2% of Black workers were unionized, compared to 10.3% of workers overall.
6. Of all states, Mississippi has the largest share of Black Americans as a percentage of its population.
7. Eighty-two percent of employed Black women worked full time in 2019, while 77% of overall full time employed women did.
8. In 2019, 77.9% of Black people with an advanced degree and 77.4% with a bachelor's degree participated in the labor force. However, 58.9% of Black people with a high school diploma and 37.3% without a high school diploma did.
9. Black high school attainment was at a record 87.9% by 2019.
10. The 117th Congress has 62 Black members, a record high. They represent constituents from 28 states, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, DC.