Saturday, August 13, 2022

Play

Voting-rights groups sue AZ to block 'Election Security' Bills; U.S House vote expected today on the new Inflation Reduction Act; the Attorney General moves to release details on search of Trump s home.

Play

Local election officials detail how election misinformation is fueling threats; Media outlets ask a court to unseal the search warrant of Donald Trump's home; and the CDC changes its approach to COVID-19.

Play

Infrastructure funding is on its way, ranchers anticipate money from the Inflation Reduction Act, and rural America is becoming more diverse, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the leadership.

Nebraska Law Enforcement Behind on Language Accessibility

Play

Thursday, October 28, 2021   

LINCOLN, Neb. -- Not one law-enforcement agency in Nebraska is meeting all U.S. Department of Justice guidance and best practices on how to provide language access to residents with limited English proficiency, despite a wealth of available tools and resources, according to a new ACLU Nebraska report.

Rose Godinez, interim legal director for the group, said it is critical for all residents who encounter police to understand what is being said.

"We hope Nebraska law-enforcement agencies will explore these strategies and understand and address language access to ensure public safety for all, and to protect the constitutional rights for all Nebraskans," Godinez stated.

Federal law requires law-enforcement agencies receiving federal funds to ensure people with limited English proficiency have meaningful language access to services. But 12 of 19 agencies surveyed did not have instructions for their officers on how and when to access language services during interviews, interrogations or traffic stops.

ACLU Nebraska is calling on the Nebraska Crime Commission to update its 2015 language access plan to address the deficiencies. The commission did not respond to a request for comment.

Researchers found 14 of 19 law-enforcement agencies did not have any officers who had attended training on how to navigate language barriers.

Godinez emphasized once adopted, new policies also need to be publicized, so people will know that they can request interpreters or translators if they are stopped or questioned by police.

"If individuals don't see the policy, or don't see that this is available, they won't ask for it," Godinez pointed out. "Then there really isn't any meaningful language access being provided."

Census figures show nearly 5% of Nebraskans have limited English proficiency, and more than one in ten speak a language other than English at home.

Godinez noted entire communities are safer when everyone, regardless of languages spoken, feels valued and heard by those entrusted to keep us safe.

Disclosure: ACLU of Nebraska contributes to our fund for reporting on Civil Rights, Criminal Justice, Immigrant Issues, and Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
Since the 2020 election, at least 19 states have passed 34 laws restrict­ing access to voting, according to the Brennan Center For Justice. (Orlowiski Designs/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Voting-rights advocates are suing the state of Arizona over new regulations they say make it harder for some people to register and would block thousa…


Social Issues

New Hampshire ranks second in the country on measures of child well-being, according to the new 2022 Kids Count Data Book from the Annie E. Casey …

Social Issues

Massachusetts ranks first in the nation for children's well-being, according to the 2022 Kids Count Data Book from the Annie E. Casey Foundation…


While there are continued disparities, an annual report says Minnesota has seen progress in elevating kids out of poverty, with 12% of children falling into that category. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Minnesota once again gets a high ranking among states for child well-being, but an annual report says the state's disparities remain a challenge…

Social Issues

Some measurements of children's well-being show warning signs in Iowa in the area of education. The numbers contrast with Iowa's overall ranking in a …

Pictured in the center is Francine "Fran" Pace, one of 11 graduates of this summer's Youth Leadership Academy for Iowans with disabilities. (Photo courtesy of DD Council).

Health and Wellness

Nearly a dozen Iowa youths with disabilities are taking newly developed leadership skills out into the world. A summer academy wrapped up this month…

Environment

A coalition of community organizations teamed up in Oregon to force a chronic polluter out of business, and bring environmental justice to a nearby …

Health and Wellness

During National Health Center Week, health-care advocates are highlighting the work Community Health Centers are doing to improve access to care …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021