Accessibility Note: This site uses JavaScript menus, but not for animation. All menus should be accessible with JavaScript activated.

Office of Health Disparities

Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander Health

Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (NHPIs) in Utah

History

The first known NHPIs to settle in Utah were Native Hawaiians who arrived in 1873. A sizeable NHPI community emerged in the Salt Lake Valley which included Maori from New Zealand beginning in 1884, Samoans prior to 1898, and Tongans as early as 1924. While many of Utah’s NHPIs can trace their ancestry to these early arrivals, the largest influx of NHPIs occurred following World War II.

Population

There are nearly 38,000 Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders residing in Utah, with more than 85% living in Salt Lake County and Utah County.1 The population of Guamanians/Chamorros increased 157% between 2000 and 2010, a growth rate followed by Fijians (96% growth) and Samoans (85% growth).2

Salt Lake City and West Valley City have the largest and second largest population of Tongans of any city in the U.S., with one in four Tongan Americans living in Utah. While Salt Lake City has the fourth-largest Samoan community in the U.S., the overall proportion of NHPIs in Salt Lake City is greater than any other city in the continental U.S.3

Sociodemographics

The median age of Utah NHPIs in 2014 is 20.2 years – the second “youngest” population in Utah, with a sex distribution of 52.2% males and 47.8% females.1

Nearly one-quarter of NHPIs in Salt Lake City are foreign-born.4 About 68% of Tongans and 45% of Samoans report speaking a language other than English at home, with Tongan and Samoan being the fifth-most spoken and ninth-most spoken languages in Utah respectively.5 About 7% of Tongans and 9% of Samoans hold a bachelor’s degree, the lowest rates of any race group.6

RACE/ETHNICITY

Population

Median
Age (Years)

%
Male

%
Female

Foreign Born

Other
Language

Bachelor’s
Degree

White

2,601,525

29.4

50.2%

49.8%

5.3%

9.2%

20.5%

Hispanic/Latino

370,870

23.6

51.6%

48.4%

40.0%

67.1%

8.2%

Asian

80,037

26.8

47.5%

52.5%

48.2%

57.1%

24.2%

American Indian/ Alaska Native

59,338

24.1

49.6%

50.4%

2.5%

31.4%

8.7%

Black/African American

47,856

19.6

55.2%

44.8%

17.2%

22.8%

14.5%

Native Hawaiian/ Pacific Islander

37,994

20.2

52.2%

47.8%

21.3%

44.0%

11.2%

1U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Estimates of the Resident Population by Sex, Age, Race Alone or in Combination, 2014 Population Estimates, Table PEPA SR5H; ACS 2011-2013 3-Year Estimates, Table S0201. 2U.S. Census Bureau, 2010 Census SF1, Tables P8, P9, and PCT10; 2010 Census SF1, Tables P5, P6, and PCT10. 3U.S. Census Bureau, 2010 Census SF1, Table P6; 2010 Census SF1, Table PCT10. 4U.S. Census Bureau, ACS 2006-2010 5-Year Estimates, Table B05003. 5U.S. Census Bureau, ACS 2006-2010 5-Year Estimates, Table B16004. 6U.S. Census Bureau, ACS 2006-2010 5-Year Estimates, Table B15002.

Other OHD Produced Reports

Moving Forward in 2016: Fifteen Years of Health Data Trends by Race and Ethnicity for Utah Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders
This profile presents trend data from 2005, 2010, and 2015 editions of the Health Status by Race and Ethnicity reports illustrating trends in specific health indicators and health risks among Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders in Utah.

MAHINA Pilot Program: Raising Awareness About Birth Outcomes Disparities Among Pacific Islander Communities in Utah
This is a summary of OHD's collaboration with the MAHINA (Maternal Health & Infant Advocates) Task Force on a pilot project to raise awareness about birth outcomes disparities among Utah Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander communities.

African American and Pacific Islander Postnatal Interview Study: How the Rest of their Lives Affects Pregnancies of Pacific Islanders and African Americans in Utah
Utah’s first ever qualitative study with Utah African American and Pacific Islander mothers who had experienced an adverse birth outcomes, this study focused on identifying social determinants of health factors.

Developing a Multilingual Questionnaire and Surname List to Sample Utah Pacific Islanders
This peer-reviewed article explains the methods and implications of the 2011 Pacific Islander Study. Journal of Public Health Management & Practice: March/April 2013 - Volume 19 - Issue 2 - p E25–E31 doi: 10.1097/PHH.0b013e318252ee60

Utah Pacific Islanders Community Perspectives
This report outlines an in-depth conversation with local Pacific Islanders about perspectives surrounding birth outcomes from the results of two surveys and five focus groups.

Utah Pacific Islanders 2011
The first statewide health survey conducted in three languages, interviewing 605 adult Utah Pacific Islanders in English, Tongan, and Samoan.

Utah Health Disparities Summary 2009

Minority Communities

Office of Health Disparities Reduction(OHD), Utah Department of Health(UDOH)

Mailing Address: PO Box 141000 Salt Lake City, UT 84114 | Location: 288 N 1460 W Salt Lake City, UT 84116

Email: | Phone: 801-538-6777

Use Disclaimer | Privacy Policy