Language Access in the Courts and Law Enforcement
Management Information Exchange Journal, Vol. 24, No. 4, p. 36, Winter 2008
5 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2010
Date Written: 2008
Individuals with limited proficiency in English (LEP) can have difficulty accessing the courts and law enforcement, adversely affecting the lives of these individuals and their communities. Advocates are trying to help state courts obtain the financial and other resources necessary to improve their language access programs. The National Language Access Advocates Network (N-LAAN), the Brennan Center for Justice, and Justice Speaks are all working on the national level to improve court interpreter programs. Significant court interpreter reform efforts are also underway in California, New York, and Pennsylvania. Additionally, starting in 2004 Philadelphia-based Community Legal Services (CLS) worked to persuade the Department of Justice to find the Philadelphia Police Department out of compliance with its language access obligations under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. CLS then negotiated a new police language access policy, which was issued in December 2005.
Keywords: limited English proficiency, LEP, access to courts, translation, interpreters, state courts, National Language Access Advocates Network, N-LAAN, Justice Speaks, Community Legal Services, Department of Justice, law enforcement, language access, Civil Rights Act, Tivtle VI, Civil Gideon
JEL Classification: I3, K1, K4, I18, J18
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation