NCLEJ and Colleagues Promoted Access to Benefits for Families with Limited English Proficiency

Enforcing civil rights laws that require translation and interpretation is critical toward ensuring the health and well-being of the growing number of our nation’s non-English speaking population. In 2002 we played a pivotal role in getting the Arizona state agency to complete its translation of public benefits forms into Spanish and implement a detailed action plan improving program access for those with limited English proficiency. We worked with the William E. Morris Institute for Justice and Southern Arizona Legal Aid.

In 2004 we filed a lawsuit challenging the California Food Stamp agency’s failure to translate Food Stamp materials into non-English languages, so that low-income non-English speakers can have better access to this vital nutrition program. We are co-counsel with attorneys from Bay Area Legal Aid, Coalition of California Welfare Rights Organizations, and Legal Services of Northern California (Vu v. Mitchell).