Neighborhood environment perceptions among latinos in the U.S.

Lilian G. Perez, John M. Ruiz, David Berrigan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


In the U.S., immigrants and racial/ethnic minorities (e.g., Latinos) often report unfavorable neighborhood environments, which may hinder physical activity (PA). Among Latinos, PA levels are disproportionately lower in foreign-born, female, older, and low-education individuals. It is unclear whether these subgroups, including those from multiple disadvantaged backgrounds (e.g., low education, foreign-born), perceive worse neighborhood environments for PA. This cross-sectional study aimed to examine differences in neighborhood environment perceptions among Latinos in the 2015 National Health Interview Survey (N = 4643; 59% foreign-born). Logistic regression models examined nativity-and its interactions with age, gender, and education-in relation to the perceived presence of transportation infrastructure (two items) and destinations (four items), controlling for self-reported walking. Models used sample weights and accounted for the complex survey design. Nativity was not significantly associated with neighborhood environment perceptions. However, nativity interactions with age and education showed the greatest inequities (lowest perceptions) of neighborhood infrastructure (e.g., fewer sidewalks) or destinations (e.g., fewer places to relax) among disadvantaged U.S.-born (older or low education) and advantaged foreign-born (higher education) Latinos. Findings suggest neighborhood perceptions are shaped by complex interactions of nativity with structural (education) and contextual (age) factors. Additional research is needed to complement our findings and inform environmental interventions targeting Latinos.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3062
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Acculturation
  • Built environment
  • Hispanics
  • Inequities
  • Latinos
  • Neighborhood perceptions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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