Saint Louis, MO

St. Louis seeking to stem population decline with Afghan refugees

Representational imageGoodfreephotos_com

After the United States withdrew its troops from Afghanistan at the end of August 2021, more than 76,000 Afghan refugees have relocated to the U.S. About 600 of them have made it to St. Louis so far and another 750 are expected by later this year.

The population of the city of St. Louis fell below 300,000 in 2021 and the metropolitan area also saw a decline in population as the region for the first time recorded more deaths than births. Civic leaders are expecting thousand of more refugees to relocate to the city, helping to offset decades of population loss and rejuvenate urban neighborhoods. Todd Schnuck, CEO of Schnucks Markets, said:

We have been losing ground to other cities because our population as a region has been stagnant. We have an opportunity to reverse this trend but we have to act now or we will fall behind other cities in population and opportunity.

Many Bosnian refugees settled in St Louis after fleeing the former Yugoslavia during the Bosnian War, which lasted from 1992 to 1995 helping to rejuvenate several St. Louis neighborhoods. The Bosnian population in St. Louis, Missouri numbers over 60,000, making it the largest Bosnian community outside of Bosnia anywhere in the world.

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