2015-16 Interpreter Bills
Updated On: Jul 31, 2020

SB 5787 Model Policy and Procedures for Language Access by LEP Parents of Students

Senate Bill 5787, sponsored by Sen. Pramila Jayapal of the 37th District, requires public school districts to develop Language Assistance Plans to improve communications with Limited English Proficient parents. This is in direct response to the Providing Language Access Services for Limited English Proficient Parents in Washington Schools report issued on January 2015 by the Office of the Education Ombudsman.

Update: Died in the House Appropiations Committe 

HB 1780 / SB 5664 Regulating Interpreter Services

Bills building on the Federation-initiated and negotiated reforms that saved the state millions of dollars for medical interpreter services are now before legislative committees. The bills would centralize and consolidate the procurement of spoken language interpreter services and expand the use of language access providers. The aim is to reduce administrative costs while protecting consumers.

The bills are Senate Bill 5664, sponsored by Sen. Pramila Jayapal of the 37th District, and House Bill 1780, sponsored by Rep. Steve Bergquist of the 11th District. 

Most importantly, these bills would reform the procurement of interpreter services at Washington State's Labor & Industries (WA L&I). The US Department of Justice together with the US Department of Labor have found WA's L&I in non-compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

Update: Died in the House Appropiations Committe 

WCAN 2016 Legislative Report Card

People of color make up a rapidly increasing proportion of Washington State. In 2014, people of color made up 29.6% of the state’s 7 million residents. The Washington Community Action Network's Facing Race 2016 Legislative Report Card examines 34 bills from the 2015 Regular and Special Sessions that have the most direct impact on racial equity. This report evaluates legislators’ leadership and votes on these bills. Legislation is analyzed for both positive and negative effects. Language access bills are included in this report.

Each legislator has been given a letter grade based on their voting record and leadership in authoring legislation that promotes racial equity or exacerbates racial inequities. Exceptional leadership for racial equity can result in an A++ (101-115%). Support for language access bills is one of the measurements this report tracked.

More Information:
WCan Facing Race Report
OEO Report re language access in schools
Civil Rights Complaint against L&I
HB1780 / SB5664 Flyer
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