Outmigration In Louisiana Is Now So Bad, It’s Like A Refugee Crisis

We keep coming back to this, because the numbers keep rolling in and telling a frightening story – Louisiana is disintegrating before our very eyes.

No, we aren’t talking about the state’s shrinking coastline. We’re talking about its disastrous outmigration crisis. Our people are leaving in droves, and our leadership is doing absolutely nothing to stop it.

Louisiana lost more than 27,000 residents from July 1, 2020 to July 1 of last year, or about 0.6% of the population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

The bureau’s report is a mixed bag for the Capital Region, with East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberville and Pointe Coupee losing population while other parishes gained or held steady.

Lake Charles had the largest percentage decrease among metro areas in the nation at 5.3%, the bureau says.

More than 73% of U.S. counties experienced natural decrease in 2021, up from 45.5% in 2019 and 55.5% in 2020. Natural decrease occurs when there are more deaths than births in a population over a given period.

Some counties (and parishes) also experienced population declines attributable to migration, and that was particularly true in Louisiana. States with the highest percentages of counties with net domestic migration loss—people moving from one area to another within the U.S.—were Alaska (80.0%), Louisiana (71.9%) and Illinois (65.7%).

It’s catastrophic. Remember, the Lake Charles area was Louisiana’s boomtown just a few years ago. Now, between hurricane damage and the end of the industrial construction boom there, it’s practically a ghost town.

But the rest of the state is pretty badly off as well. There’s enough purple in the Louisiana map to fill an LSU jersey.

Where Counties are Growing[Source: U.S. Census Bureau]

This can’t continue. Something has to be done about it. You have places all over Louisiana which are turning into ghost towns as Texas, Florida, Tennessee and other neighboring states bleed us dry, and nobody is doing anything about it.


The thing is, people move away from Texas and Florida, too. That happens all the time. What differentiates them from us is that people move in to those places. Almost nobody is moving in to Louisiana.

The drop in population of some 27,000 doesn’t necessarily reflect a net outmigration, as for the time period covered by the Census survey there were more deaths than births in Louisiana and elsewhere in the country. That isn’t a usual thing; pre-COVID there were almost always more births than deaths. Between the virus and the awful results of the stupid public policy decisions made in an attempt to deal with it, that changed. So we weren’t just losing population from people renting U-Hauls and getting the hell out of dodge, we’re losing them from a staggeringly high murder rate, suicides off the charts, drug overdoses, bad maintenance of medical conditions and other things.

But the specific breakdown of our population loss down to the last number doesn’t matter. People are leaving, and they’re leaving in droves. And our leaders simply don’t care. If they did, they would be furiously attempting to create reasons why Louisiana people would want to stay and why people from out of state would want to come.

None of that is happening. And Louisiana is disintegrating. Fast.



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