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Bangladeshi American

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Title: Bangladeshi American  
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Subject: Queens, Little Spain, Bangladeshi diaspora, Bangladesh–United States relations, Demographics of Asian Americans
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Bangladeshi American

Bangladeshi American
Total population
0.048% of U.S. Population (2010)
(includes Multiracial Bangladeshis)
Regions with significant populations

Bangladeshi Americans are Americans of Bangladeshi descent. The majority of Bangladeshi Americans are Bengalis, and a minority are from indigenous Jumma people or Pahari people. Bangladeshi immigrants have arrived in the United States in large numbers since the early 1970s to become among the fastest growing ethnic communities since that decade. New York City, Paterson in New Jersey, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Boston, Atlanta, Detroit, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, Houston, North Carolina, Seattle, and Hamtramck, Michigan are home to notable Bangladeshi communities.

Bangladeshi Americans are expected to grow rapidly in the coming years, as emigration from Bangladesh to America continues to increase. Bangladeshi immigrants and the majority of their descendants tend to have more children than the average American family, live in homogenous ethnic communities in large cities, have high rates of poverty and live in lower income households in large cities.


Immigration to the United States from Bangladesh grew slowly but steadily from the 1970s-80s. Over ten thousand Bangladeshis have immigrated to the United States annually.[1] Many of the migrants settled in urban areas such as New York City and Paterson, New Jersey; as well as Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago, and Detroit. Some authorities claimed that a number of these people were illegal immigrants, around 100 were deported under the 1996 immigration act, by the Baishakhi Mela event. Baishakhi Mela events have been held in major American cities such as New York City, Paterson in New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles, as the Bangladeshi population continues to increase in these cities.[5] Many of these Bangladeshis were taxicab drivers, while others had white-collar occupations.[6]


The New York City Metropolitan Area is home to by far the largest Bangladeshi population in the United States.[7][8][9]
Paterson, New Jersey is home to the second largest Bangladeshi American population, after New York City.[8]

The 2000 census undertaken by the Census Bureau listed 57,412 people identifying themselves as having Bangladeshi origin.[10] Almost 40% of Bangladeshis over the age of 25 had at least a Bachelor's degree as compared to less than 25% of the United States population.

New York City is home to the largest Bangladeshi community in the United States, receiving by far the highest legal permanent resident Bangladeshi immigrant population.[1] The Bangladeshi community in New York City is spread out in the Jackson Heights neighborhood within the New York City borough of Queens. 74th Street has most of the Bangladeshi grocery stores and clothing stores in Jackson Heights. The Bangladesh Plaza hosts numerous Bangladeshi businesses and cultural events. Recently, one part of Jackson Heights has become the open platform of all sorts of protests and activism. Interestingly most of the cab drivers belong to Bangladesh National Party (BNP) and Awami League branch of New York City. The neighboring communities of Jackson Heights, Woodside, and Elmhurst in Queens also similarly became attractive areas to live for Bangladeshi Americans.

Since the 1970s, thousands of Bangladeshis were able to legally migrate to the USA through the Diversity Visa Program/ lottery. Many initiated a migration to Jamaica, Queens. Continuous movement of Bangladeshis to Jamaica has made some parts extensively Bangladeshi majority zone. Centering around 169 street and Hillside Avenue, the neighborhood has become a popular zone due to the large number of restaurants and groceries. Sagar Restaurant, Gharoa, Deshi Shaad, Kabir's Bakery are attractions for the Bangladeshi communities all over the city. The largest numbers of Bangladeshi Americans now live in Jamaica, Hollis, and Briarwood in Queens. Bangladeshi enclaves in Queens and Brooklyn have been increasing as Bangladeshis in NYC continue to grow rapidly. Bangladeshis form one of the fastest growing Asian ethnic groups in NYC as new enclaves in areas such as City Line and Ozone Park have sprung up.[11] Wealthier Bangladeshis have been moving to Long Island, New York, as a particular reason for popular settlement in the area is the pharmaceutical companies existing on Long Island; there are quite a large number of Bangladeshi-owned pharmaceutical companies in Nassau County and Suffolk County on Long Island employing many people of Bangladeshi origin.

Paterson, New Jersey is home a significant Bangladeshi American population,[12][13] the second largest after New York City. Many Bangladeshi The Record.[14]

New York statistics:

  • 1970 census:
    • Total population: 4,955 (5,406 in New York and 11,838 in total in the United States).
    • Highest concentrations: Queens—2,567 people, and Brooklyn—1,313.
    • In Manhattan Bangladeshis formed a small enclave in 6th Street. High numbers of people lived in the Astoria area in Queens.[15]
  • 2000 census:
    • Total population: 28,269
    • Highest concentrations: Queens—18,310 people (65%), Brooklyn—6,243 (22%), Bronx—2,442 (9%), Manhattan—1,204 (4%), Staten Island—70 (0.2%)
    • Population growth rate from 1970-2000: 471%
    • Foreign-born population: 23,157 (85%)
    • Limited English proficiency: 14,840 (60%)
    • Median Household Income: $31,537
    • People Living in Poverty: 8,312
    • Percentage of people in poverty: 31%
  • 2010 census:
    • Total population: 50,677
    • Highest concentrations: Queens (60%), Brooklyn (19%), Bronx (17%), Manhattan (4%), Staten Island (0.4%)
    • Population growth rate from 2000-2010:
    • Foreign-born population: 74%
    • Limited English proficiency: 53%
    • Median Household Income: $36,741
    • Percentage of people in poverty: 32% [16]

Bangladeshi neighborhoods in NYC include Jamaica, Jamaica Hill, Briarwood, Jackson Heights, Woodside, Elmhurst, Hunters Point, West Maspeth and Astoria in Queens; Kensington and City Line in Brooklyn.[11] Parkchester in The Bronx is also home to an increasing Bangladeshi population [16][17] Other, smaller Little Bangladesh communities can be found in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Detroit, and Los Angeles.

The majority of Bangladeshi immigrants are between 10–39 years of age; 62% are men. Mainly men immigrated due to employment opportunity differences. Approximately 50% of men and 60% of women are married upon arrival to the United States. Statistics show that Bangladeshis tend to vote for the Democratic Party.[18]

Notable Bangladeshi Americans

Sears Tower (now Willis Tower), was designed by Fazlur Rahman Khan. It was the tallest building in the world for over two decades.


  1. ^ a b c "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2012 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  2. ^ "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2011 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  3. ^ "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2010 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  4. ^ Kershaw, Sarah (8 March 2001). "Queens to Detroit: A Bangladeshi Passage". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 April 2010. 
  5. ^ Other Immigrants: The Global Origins of the American People. By David M. Reimers. page 198-200.
  6. ^ The North American Muslim Resource Guide : Muslim Community Life in the United States and Canada. By Mohamed Nimer. page 33.
  7. ^ "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2012 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-14. 
  8. ^ a b "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2011 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-14. 
  9. ^ "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2010 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2013-04-14. 
  10. ^ Jessica S. Barnes; Claudette E. Bennett (February 2002). "The Asian Population: 2000". U.S. Census Bureau. U.S. Department of Commerce. Archived from the original on 23 October 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009. 
  11. ^ a b "The City Line neighborhood on the Brooklyn-Queens border has become a booming Bangladeshi enclave". NY Daily News. 
  12. ^ Joe Malinconico and Charlie Kratovil (2012-05-09). "Paterson's Bengali Community Takes Pride in Akhtaruzzaman's Upset Victory". The Alternative Press. Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  13. ^ Nick Clunn (2012-05-09). "Update: Bangladeshi-Americans score a first with Paterson Council election". North Jersey Media Group. Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  14. ^ Ed Rumley (2014-10-12). "Paterson’s Bangladeshi community celebrates start of Martyrs’ Monument". Retrieved 2014-10-13. 
  15. ^ Salaam America: South Asian Muslims in New York. By Aminah Mohammad-Arif. page 33-35.
  16. ^ a b "Asian American Federation NY". Asian American Federation. Retrieved 26 September 2014. 
  17. ^ "The Bangladeshis Are On The Rise in New York City". Huffington Post. Retrieved 26 September 2014. 
  18. ^ Harvard encyclopedia of American ethnic groups. By Stephan Thernstrom, Ann Orlov, Oscar Handlin. page 173-174.
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^

External links

  • US Census 2000 foreign born population by country
  • Asian American Federation Census information
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