Survey of Los Angeles Jewish population highlights growth and diversity among age groups

A survey of the Los Angeles Jewish community found that the area’s Jewish population has increased 9% since the last communal survey in 1997.

The “2021 Jewish LA Study” was conducted on behalf of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles and covers an area spanning more than 70 miles from Simi Valley in the north to South Bay near Orange County.

According to the report, some 294,200 Jewish households with more than 700,000 residents reside there. Of these people, some 565,000 are Jewish and another 173,000 are non-Jewish.

Nearly 50% of the population is over 55 years old. The number of men and women is evenly split at 49% each, with 1% of respondents saying they are non-binary or of another gender.

The study revealed diversity within the Jewish community.

For example, 6% of respondents or 32,500 adults identified as a Jewish person of color; a quarter of them identify as black and 21% identify as Asian. Nearly all Jews of color said they felt welcomed into the Los Angeles Jewish community, while nearly 30% said it was unwelcoming and nearly 20% had no opinion .

In addition, 27,000 Israelis live in LA; this number includes 16,500 people born in Israel and another 10,500 born elsewhere. Some 48,000 respondents are Russian-speaking Jews and 28,000 identified as Latino or Latina.

As many as 11,500 Persian Jewish households also live in the area. Among this population, there are 7,500 Jewish households that include someone born in Iran and 4,000 that include a child of someone born in Iran. There are an additional 4,000 households that include the child of someone who was born in Iran but does not identify as Persian.

Other findings of the report include:

  • 24% of Jewish households have children under the age of 18, while 29% of households are made up of childless couples and an equal number of single adults living alone. The remaining 18% of Jewish households have adults of different generations living together; this includes young adults living with their parents and middle-aged adults living in a house with their elderly parents.
  • While 20% of Jewish Angelinos say they are “well-off,” almost the same number of respondents are classified as “struggling.”
  • 50% of respondents do not identify with any of the religious streams of Judaism, 27% identifying with reform, 15% with conservatives and 7% with orthodox.
  • The intermarriage rate is 42% overall; however, it rises to 60% among adults aged 22 to 30.