Hispanics Comprise 31% of the Construction Workforce

Diversifying the construction labor force is a key strategic goal given the ongoing skilled labor shortage. The latest labor force statistics from the 2022 American Community Survey[1] show that Non-Hispanic White people account for the majority of workers in the construction industry (57.5%). However, Hispanics make up close to one-third of the construction labor force (31.1%), followed by Black people (5.1%), and Asian people (1.8%).  

The most noticeable recent trend in construction employment is the increase in the number and share of Hispanic workers. From 2010 to 2022, the number of Hispanics working in the construction industry rose from 2.5 million to almost 3.7 million. The share of Hispanics employed in the construction industry grew rapidly over the past decade, from 23.6% in 2010 to 31.1% in 2022. Now close to one-third of workers in construction is Hispanic.

Hispanics are overrepresented in the construction industry, as they make up 31.1% of construction employment compared to 18.7% across all industries in 2022. Non-Hispanic White people account for 57.5% which is about the same as across all industries (58.3%). Black and Asian people are underrepresented in the construction industry.

The share of Hispanic workers in construction varies considerably by state, ranging from only 2% in West Virginia, Vermont, and Maine to more than 50% in New Mexico, Texas, California and Nevada. Hispanic workers in the construction industry are more geographically concentrated in the Southern and Western states, where a large number of Hispanic people reside. In fact, 54% of the nation’s Hispanic construction workforce is concentrated in three states – Texas (827,000), California (775,000), and Florida (373,000).

New Mexico also stands out for registering the highest share of Hispanic people in the construction labor force (64%).  Texas is next on the list, with Hispanic people accounting for 63% of its construction workforce, followed by California at 58%.

In contrast, the construction industry in the Northeast region relies heavily on non-Hispanic White Americans. Non-Hispanic White people make up more than 95% of the construction workforce in New Hampshire, West Virginia, Vermont, Maine.

Black and Asian people are underrepresented in the construction industry in most states. Black people comprise only 5.1% of the construction workforce, while their share in the US labor force is almost 12%. States with the largest share of Black workers in construction are Mississippi (19%), followed by Alabama (13%), and Maryland (13%). Asian people account for less than 2% of the US construction workforce. However, their share is significant in Hawaii, where 28% of construction workers are Asian.

[1] From this post, American Community Survey, PUMS Data is and will be used as the data source for the demographic estimates of construction workforce.


Discover more from Eye On Housing

Subscribe to get the latest posts sent to your email.

Leave a Reply