people in Los Angeles know Chinatown as a distinctly Asian community where you
can go if you want genuine Asian food or products. It’s also known as a good
place to shop for cheap due to the low prices and availability of goods. Because
it is an Asian area, it is possible that people project their stereotypes when
they visit Chinatown. One such stereotype is that Asians are smart and do well
in school; surprisingly, has a high rate of people with less than a high school
degree and a low rate of people with higher education. An insensitive social
worker could make an inappropriate comment without even thinking about it if
they believe this stereotype. A not so surprising demographic is that there the
mean age is 37. When in Chinatown, you see more elderly than younger people
working the stores or the shops. What is even more shocking is that the elderly
moves so quickly and seem so much healthier than the younger people. One thing
that might be a problem is that shopkeepers do follow you around until you buy
something, or they speak in Mandarin or Cantonese in front of you and makes it
feel like they are talking about you; it is a bit uncomfortable. Social workers
might have a hard time gaining their trust since they may say one thing in
English but something different in Mandarin or Cantonese, something may be lost
in translation when speaking, or a social worker might accidently insult the
person if they are not familiar with Asian culture etiquette.
According to the Los Angeles Times, in the
last seven days (January 7-January 13), violent crime reports jumped
significantly, and property crime reports dipped. Over the last three months, Chinatown averaged 1.5 violent crimes and 8.8 property
crimes per week. There are 2.4 crimes per 10,000 people. If we look at the last
six months (June 12, 2017 to Dec. 10, 2017), the rate of 83.2 crimes per 10,000
people is lower than in nearby Downtown, Boyle
Heights, Echo Park, Lincoln Heights and Elysian Park
(Los Angeles Times). Chinatown is covered by two
police jurisdictions; Central and Rampart.
There are 101 veterans living in
Chinatown, with the percentage of veterans who served during World War II or
the Korean War being the highest at 56; 28 in the Vietnam War; 6 in wars from
1975-1989; and 10 in wars from 1990-1999.
The average household size is 2.8 with renting
your home at 91% and owning your home at 9%. There are 220 families (9.6%)
headed by single parents. For males, 59% are married, 4.4% are divorced, 2.5%
are widowed, and 34.2% have never married. For females, 53.3% are married, 4.2%
are divorced, 14.9% are widowed, and 27.5% have never married.
In Chinatown, only 8.3%
of residents 25 and older have a four-year degree, low for the
city of Los Angeles and low for the county which
means that 4, 017 people have less than a high school education level, 1,033
have a high school education level, 1,024 have some college, 441 have a
Bachelor’s Degree and 110 have a Master’s Degree or higher. There are three
schools operating within Chinatown – Endeavor College Preparatory Charter School, grades
4-8; Castelar Street Elementary School, grades
K-5; and Cathedral
High School, a private Catholic boys’ school, just down the hill from Dodger
Stadium, on the north side of Chinatown. There is also a public library.
The median household income (2008 dollars)
in Chinatown is $22,754
(Los Angeles Times). 1,880 people make $20,000 or less; 873 people making
between $20,000 and $40,000; 303 people making between $40,000 and $60,000; 260
people making between $60,000 and $125,000; and 35 people making $125,000 and
In terms of ethnicity break down,
Chinatown is mostly Asian with 70.6% with Latinos falling in
second with 23.5%, followed by Whites 2.5%, Black/African-Americans 1.8%, and
other 1.5% (Los Angeles Times). The median age in Chinatown is 37, with1,371
being 10 or less; 879 being 11-18; 2,126 being 19-34; 1,944 being 35-49; 1,377
being 50-64; and 1,914 being 65 and up. Chinese (56.5%) and Mexican
(17.1%) are the most common ancestries with 6,960 (72.4%) of residents are foreign born. China (55.3%) and Mexico (12.4%) are the most common
foreign places of birth (Los Angeles Times).
Angeles, California is a relatively small area in Central LA; it has an area of
0.91 square miles. Its borders include Boyle Heights, Elysian
Park to the north, Lincoln Heights to the east, Downtown to the south and
southwest and Echo Park to the west and northwest; to the north is Beaudry Avenue, Stadium Way, North Broadway; to the east is the Los Angeles River; and to the southwest is Cesar Chavez Avenue.
When looking at a map, Chinatown forms the shape of a lopsided-heart (?).
According to a U.S. Census in 2000, Chinatown’s population was 9,610. In 2008,
based on the L.A. Department of City Planning estimates, the population had
reached 28,839. There is about 10,568 people per square mile, which is about
average for the city of Los Angeles and about
average for the county (Los Angeles Times).