Paterson is a larger medium-sized city located in the state of New Jersey. With a population of 147,000 people and 33 constituent neighborhoods, Paterson is the third largest community in New Jersey.
Because occupations involving physical labor dominate the local economy, Paterson is generally considered to be a blue-collar town. 36.67% of the Paterson workforce is employed in blue-collar occupations, compared to the national average of 27.7%. Overall, Paterson is a city of service providers, sales and office workers, and transportation and shipping workers. There are especially a lot of people living in Paterson who work in office and administrative support (12.75%), sales jobs (9.44%), and maintenance occupations (7.56%).
Many people in Paterson take advantage of public transportation to get around. In fact, for the size of the city, the number of people who use the bus to commute to work is quite high. This helps to fill a need among Paterson citizens for affordable transportation.
The percentage of people in Paterson with college degrees is quite a bit lower than the national average for cities and towns of 21.84%: just 10.22% of people over 25 have a bachelor's degree or advanced degree.
The per capita income in Paterson in 2010 was $16,142, which is low income relative to New Jersey and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $64,568 for a family of four. However, Paterson contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.
Paterson is an extremely ethnically-diverse city. The people who call Paterson home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. People of Hispanic or Latino origin are the most prevalent group in Paterson, accounting for 59.28% of the city’s residents (people of Hispanic or Latino origin can be of any race). The greatest number of Paterson residents report their race to be Black or African-American, followed by White. Important ancestries of people in Paterson include Italian, Palestinian, Irish, and German.
Foreign born people are also an important part of Paterson's cultural character, accounting for 34.26% of the city’s population.
The most common language spoken in Paterson is Spanish. Other important languages spoken here include English and Arabic.