The Guyana Diaspora in the US
The United States has the highest number of Guyanese outside of Guyana. An average of 6,080 people a year emigrated from Guyana between 1969 and 1976, increasing to an average of 14,400 between 1976 and 1981. As of 1990, 80 percent of Guyanese-Americans lived in the Northeast United States, mainly in New York. According to the latest U.S. Census’ American Fact Finder, there are an estimated 273,000 people in the U.S. claiming Guyanese as their first ancestry as of 2013. It is however estimated that more than 450,000 people of Guyanese descent currently reside in America.
The majority of Guyanese live in New York City – more than 140,000 – making them the fifth-largest foreign-born population in the city. Guyanese began coming the US even before Independence in 1966, although most would have migrated to Britain back then.
The first waves of Guyanese to arrive in the U.S. came around 1968. Today there are significant Guyanese American populations in New Jersey, Florida, Connecticut, Georgia, Texas, California, the Carolinas, the Washington DC metro area and Massachusetts.
Over the years Guyanese Americans have established a wide range of business enterprises ranging from grocery stores to medical facilities, restaurants and night clubs, legal services and more.
In 2014 remittances from the United States to Guyana totaled some US$438 million, (G$ 90.7 billion), according to the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
Guyanese are active in the organizations of the larger Caribbean region. There are many Guyanese cultural and social associations.