Needs and Challenges
In the survey, we asked 48 jurisdictions if they believed that their language access program/services have improved over the last 5 years. Overwhelmingly, 93% of jurisdictions answered that their programs or services indeed improved. This question sought to measure jurisdictions’ overall programmatic improvements.
The survey then asked the jurisdictions to support their answers and explain why they felt there were improvements. (Note: The survey did not ask respondents to support their answers with actual data.) Jurisdictions detailed improvements in the areas of: increased awareness, training, understanding of policies and mandates, revisions of court rules, credentialing and certifying interpreters, establishment of LAPs and oversight bodies, video remote interpreting, etc. Some states reported specific improvements and other states reported wide-ranging changes throughout their programs.
In addition, the survey revealed that a surprising number of jurisdictions referred to “increased awareness and understanding” as either the improvement made or the impetus for the improvement. There was a common theme that an increased awareness for the need for language access led to significant improvements, including compliance and understanding of policy and services. One state reported that their, "[s]tatewide language access awareness has been significantly heightened through ongoing training and outreach, and efficiency and effectiveness of interpreting services delivery has increased through remote interpreting expansion."
Jurisdictions also have utilized education as leverage to gain the support of leadership in increasing funding and policy changes. Further, more training has led to a widespread understanding of mandates, services available, and proper delivery of those services. Listed below are actual responses in the survey detailing the improvements throughout their programs.
Interpreter Credentialing and Certification
Comprehensive Program Improvements: Court rules, VRI, Translation of documents
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