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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: April 10, 2017 10:08 AM
From: Representative Jason Dawkins
To: All House members
Subject: Language Access for Residents with Limited English Proficiency
In the near future, I intend to introduce legislation that would require state departments and agencies, elected row offices and the General Assembly to craft language access plans to better serve Pennsylvania residents with a limited ability to speak or write in English.

Specifically, my bill would require that each department’s or offices’ language access plan identifies all languages spoken by at least 3 percent of the population they serve. Vital documents and informational items must be translated into those languages. Finally, for those with a limited English proficiency who must work with a given public office on a weekly or more frequent basis, my bill would require those offices to provide oral, in-person interpretive services.

The inability to speak, understand or read the English language is a barrier that prevents access to public services that are essential to the welfare of Pennsylvania residents. Thus, it is crucial that state-level offices, including the attorney general, auditor general and treasurer, and the General Assembly provide equal access to public services for individuals with limited English proficiency.

Please join me in sponsoring this important legislation and removing the language barrier for residents of Pennsylvania.

Introduced as HB1241