handing over: Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Planning and Sustainable Development, Arlene McCommie, left, presents the report on the Trinidad and Tobago 2011 Population and Housing Census to Director of Statistics Dave Clement, right, yesterday at the Hyatt Regency, Port of Spain. Looking on is Planning Minister Dr Bhoe Tewarie. —Photo: CURTIS CHASE

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Census: Mixed population on the rise

By Camille Bethel camille.bethel@trinidadexpress.com

Trinidad and Tobago is now "a nation of ethnic minorities" with a decline in the percentages of both Indians and Africans and a 2.3 per cent increase in the mixed population.

Minister of Planning and Development Dr Bhoe Tewarie revealed these statistics at the launch of the 2011 National Population and Housing Census Demographic Report at the Hyatt Regency, Port of Spain, yesterday.

"The breakdown of statistics linked to ethnicity establishes clearly that Trinidad and Tobago is a nation of ethnic minorities with the two largest being Indians (35.4 per cent) and Africans (34.2 per cent).

The group classified as mixed is 22.8 per cent and of these 7.7 per cent are what we refer to as douglas and 15.1 per cent are mixed but not Indian/African mix. All other ethnic groups totalled 1.4 per cent and 6.2 per cent of the population did not declare an ethnicity," Tewarie said.

He added that in Tobago, 85.2 per cent of the population was of African descent with 8.5 per cent mixed and 2.54 per cent Indian.

Commenting on the religious findings of the census, Tewarie said several religious organisations have experienced declines in their membership over the past ten years.

"The largest religion in Trinidad and Tobago with 285,671 adherents is Catholicism. But this number represents a decline of 1.4 per cent. Other religions which experienced decreases include Hinduism and the Anglican Presbyterian/Congregational and Methodist Churches.

"There are 240,100 declared Hindus in Trinidad and Tobago (decline of 4.3 per cent), Presbyterian/Congregational (decline of 10.2 per cent), Methodist (decline of 16.8 per cent).

The religious denominations registering growth were Islam (1.6 per cent), Baptist (13.8 per cent), Jehovah's Witness (8.4 per cent), Seventh Day Adventists (22.7 per cent).

"But the Pentecostal/Evangelical/ Full Gospel denominations grew from 76,327 in year 2000 to 159,033 persons in year 2011 (an increase of 108.4 per cent), he noted.

Tewarie also pointed out that 146,798 persons did not state their religion and 28,842 persons declared no religion, representing a total of 175,640 persons not affiliated to any religion.

The census statistics revealed that just under 194,000 persons have some level of tertiary education.

Those achieving up to primary school level education amounted to 29.8 per cent of the population, 43.5 per cent secondary level, 6.2 per cent tertiary (but not university) and 8.4 per cent university level education, bringing the total population exposed to some tertiary education to 14.6 per cent.

"More women had tertiary education than men," Tewarie added.

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