Miami: The city of Latinos
Miami is the city with the largest percentage of Latino population in the country.
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Miami is the U.S. city with the highest percentage of residents born outside the country, at about 51% of its population, according to Guillermo Grenier, professor of Sociology at Florida International University.
"Cubans started arriving after the Revolution in 1959 and after that Latinos were arriving from different countries," said Grenier.
As Greiner mentioned, Miami's Latinization process began to strengthen when Cuban exiles became U.S. citizens and gained the right to vote in the 1970s and 1980s.
At that time, Cubans had little control over Miami and no one to represent their interests in Tallahassee and Washington.
By the mid-1980s, Cubans formed a group that, although small, was geographically concentrated in the city, which gave them great power. It was to the point that in 1986, many trucks carried a sign that read: 'The last gringo to leave Miami, turn off the light and bring the flag.'
Today, Miami is known as the city of sun, beach, partying and shopping, attracting not only tourists, but also professional Latinos in search of a better quality of life outside their native countries.
Armed with work permits, more education than Latinos arriving on foot across the border, and high expectations and a desire to advance, many people come to Miami and buy homes with pools, gardens and access to good schools.
According to the most recent U.S. Census data from 2020, Miami is the city with the highest percentage of population of Hispanic origin, making up 68.6% of the total inhabitants in its entire metropolitan area. This could be due to its proximity to Latin America and the great mobilization of migrants.
In recent years, nearly 100.000 middle-income Latin Americans from Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela and Brazil, among others, have followed Cubans, concentrating the largest population in the city and also as the largest investors.
Mercedes Guinot, a real estate agent, told the BBC that most of the houses she sells are owned by wealthy Latino immigrants. She estimates that 80% of Latin Americans pay an average of $450,000 for three- or four-bedroom homes with gardens and pools.
As a result, a large part of the city has been consolidated with the population group that not only moves the country's economy, but also makes it grow every day, generating employment for the locals as well.