Home > Asians, children and families, Hispanics, race, social and cultural issues, U.S. Census Bureau > Census Bureau Reports 64 Percent Increase in Number of Children Living with a Grandparent Over Last Two Decades

Census Bureau Reports 64 Percent Increase in Number of Children Living with a Grandparent Over Last Two Decades

July 9, 2011

Census Bureau Reports 64 Percent Increase in Number of Children Living with a Grandparent Over Last Two Decades
Source: U.S. Census Bureau

In 2009, 7.8 million children lived with at least one grandparent, a 64 percent increase since 1991 when 4.7 million children lived with a grandparent, according to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Among children living with a grandparent, 76 percent also were living with at least one parent in 2009, not statistically different from the 77 percent who lived with at least one parent in 1991.

“The people with whom children live affect their well-being,”said Rose Kreider, a family demographer with the U.S. Census Bureau. “These statistics give us a lot of detail about the number of parents children live with, as well as whether they live with siblings, grandparents or other relatives.”

These statistics released today come from the household relationship module of the Survey of Income and Program Participation collected in 2009 and published in the report Living Arrangements of Children: 2009.

In 1991, 5 percent of white, 15 percent of black and 12 percent of Hispanic children lived with at least one grandparent. By 2009, 9 percent of white, 17 percent of black and 14 percent of Hispanic children lived with at least one grandparent, a significant change for white children but not for black or Hispanic children.

Many children who do not live with a parent live with a grandparent. More than half of the children living with no parents were living with grandparents. Percentages for black children (64 percent) and non-Hispanic white children (55 percent) did not differ from Hispanic children (61 percent), but the percentage of Asian children living with no parents who lived with grandparents was lower, at 35 percent.

In 2009, 69 percent of the 74.1 million children under 18 lived with two parents. Four percent (2.9 million) of all children lived with both a mother and father who were not married to each other.

Between 1991 and 2009, children living with only their mother increased from 21 percent to 24 percent.

The percentage of children living with their mother without a father present varied widely among race and origin groups in 2009, from 8 percent for Asian children to 50 percent for black children. Seventeen percent of non-Hispanic white children and 26 percent of Hispanic children also lived with their mother only.

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