Census: Recession had sweeping impact on US life

WASHINGTON (AP) — The recession is profoundly disrupting American life: More people are delaying marriage and home-buying, turning to carpools yet stuck in ever-worse traffic, staying put rather than moving to a new city.

A broad array of U.S. census data, released Monday, also shows a dip in the foreign-born population last year, to under 38 million after it reached an all-time high in 2007. This was due to declines in low-skilled workers from Mexico searching for jobs in Arizona, Florida and California.

Health coverage varied widely by region, based partly on levels of unemployment. Massachusetts, with its universal coverage law, had fewer than one in 20 uninsured residents — the lowest in the nation. Texas had the highest share, at one in four, largely because of illegal Hispanic immigrants excluded from government-sponsored and employer-provided plans.

Demographers said the latest figures were striking confirmation of the social impact of the economic decline as it hit home in 2008. Findings come from the annual American Community Survey, a sweeping look at life built on information from 3 million households.

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