Access Denied: The Unfulfilled Promise of the D.C. Language Access Act
D.C. Language Access Act of 2004 established a comprehensive language access law that would impose affirmative obligations on government agencies in D.C. It required that oral interpretation services for limited English proficient (LEP) individuals and that vital documents must be translated in to a certain number of languages based on local data. These requirements were particularly strong for agencies that frequently interact with the public. The D.C. Office of Human Rights oversees compliance and enforcement of the law and handles complaints.
On April 23, 2012, the American University Washington College of Law released the report, “Access Denied: The Unfulfilled Promise of the D.C. Language Access Act”. The Report is a collaborative effort by the American University Washington College of Law Immigrant Justice Clinic and https://www.facebook.com/dclanguageaccess/ an alliance of over 40 community-based and civil rights organizations.
This Report was created to assess the D.C. Language Access Act by interviewing LEP individuals, in-person and phone testing of government agencies and review of government websites. The Report finds that there are a few agencies who comply with the Act, but that the majority still struggle to provide even the most basic language services. The Report also includes many recommendations for implementation of the Act for D.C. government agencies.
Click "Go to Website" below to access the report.