Latitude News brings you a round-up of articles from local news outlets around the U.S. that connect us to the rest of the world.
Beef ‘O’ Brady’s in the land of Genghis Khan
What do the U.S. and Mongolia have in common?
No, our real connection with the Mongols is a shared passion for beef, writes The Tampa Bay Times. That’s why a Tampa Bay sports bar that specializes in steaks and burgers has decided to set up shop in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia’s capital city.
“They are meat-lovers,” James Walker, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s chief development officer, tells the Times. “A brand that has ‘beef’ in the name makes a lot of sense to them.”
The Tampa-based chain has 214 locations in 22 states, as well as restaurants in Canada, Mexico and, starting early next year, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Beef ‘O’Brady’s says its restaurant in Ulaanbaatar will open in 2013 or 2014, 7,200 miles from its home in Tampa and three airplane rides away.
Washington has 8th largest population gain in U.S., a third from overseas
The Seattle Times reports that nearly 74,000 new residents moved to Washington State in the last year — and more than 24,000 of them came from overseas, according to U.S. census data.
That reflected a national trend of increased immigration, as the country’s rate of population growth increased for the first time since 2006, even while the birth rate fell. Despite the overall growth, many states actually lost residents. As the paper writes:
“At a time when many Americans were picking up and moving elsewhere in search of work in a still struggling U.S. economy, more than half the states saw net domestic population losses, meaning more people left than came . . . Only the growth they experienced through births and international migration saved them from overall population declines.”
The Los Angeles Times says the data show this year’s increase in population growth rate came entirely from immigration. In the last year, 885,800 immigrants moved to the U.S.
“We are now attracting more immigrants, a sign that the [prospects for] jobs are not keeping them away as much as the last few years,” William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution, tells The Los Angeles Times.
The Census Bureau hasn’t yet announced what countries the immigrants came from.
Kids learn the ABCs of Hmong in California immersion program
In California, there are now 233 language immersion programs, almost double the number ten years ago. Around 200 of them are for Spanish. The rest are more slightly more unusual languages: Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Armenian, German, Japanese and Italian.
But the newest on the list, writes New American Media, is Hmong, which is now being offered in a heavily Asian Sacramento neighborhood known for gangs and poverty. It’s the second such program in the country (the other is in St. Paul, Minnesota, where many Hmong settled after being offered sanctuary by the U.S. following the Vietnam War).
“They know that they are Hmong,” says one parent of a student enrolled in the program, “but they don’t even know the tradition or culture.”
New American Media reports that there are currently around 260,000 Hmong-Americans. Amazingly, 45 percent of them are 17 years old or younger. More than one in three Hmong do not have a high school diploma, and one out of four Hmong families live below the poverty line.
Already, Hmong students in Sacramento are showing signs of improvement on their test scores.
“We have a mountain of work to be done, a lot of things that need to be planned,” one kindergarten teacher in the program explains. “If [the kids] don’t know who they are, they are kind of lost.”