This two-part multimedia guide explores what language access means, the responsibilities organizations have to individuals with Limited English Proficiency, what types of language access services can help and how professionals who work with LEP populations can ensure a good experience for everyone.
1. What Is Language Access?
Today we’re going to answer your top questions about language access.
Question 1: What Is Language Access?
Language access is the right for people to access crucial information and services in the language they speak best. Even if that language isn’t English.
Question 2: Why Is Language Access Important?
In a word, everyone should be able to access key services. For example, to report seeing a fire in the community.
However, not everyone who lives in the United States speaks English comfortably.
Question 3: What Are Language Access Services?
Language access services are what make the idea of language access a reality—providing translation and interpreting to individuals who don’t speak English or who have limited English proficiency.
Some organizations use in-house interpreters, but many other organizations rely on external resources, like Accentable Services, for reasons of cost and convenience.
Accentable Services offers over-the-phone interpreting 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in more than 260 languages and dialects. That’s convenient, on-demand language access for only $1.49 per minute. Sign up online to start using the services right away.
We’ll be answering more language access questions in our next video.
2. Do I Need to Provide Language Access Services?
In our previous video, we shared with you what language access means, why it’s important and what language access services are.
Now, you may be wondering what this means for you and your organization:
- Do you need to provide language access services?
- Do you need a language access plan?
First, let’s consider what the law says.
If your organization receives any federal funds or federal assistance, even indirectly, then yes, your organization is required to provide language access services to individuals with limited English proficiency. And these services must be provided at no cost to them.
Better Service, More Clients
Second, let’s consider this question from another angle. Regardless of any legal obligations, offering language access services can do two things:
- 1. Improve relationships and the level of service your organization provides
- 2. Expand your client base
When people can access information and services in their primary language, they are more likely to make a purchase.
Language Access Plans
Which brings us to language access plans. But what is a language access plan?
It’s a written plan that details how an organization provides information and services to individuals who don’t speak English or who have limited English proficiency.
Every organization is different and its approach to a language access plan can be too.
But if you serve the public, then we recommend that your organization have one.
Creating a language access plan and distributing it within your organization helps ensure that all team members are aware of what to do when someone with limited English proficiency needs assistance.
For example, it may include instructions on how to access your organization’s over-the-phone interpreting provider.
This way your team members will know what is expected of them and what your organization offers, and your clients will receive a more consistent experience.
Language Access Solution
If you’re looking for a reliable language access solution, Accentable Services offers over-the-phone interpreting 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in more than 260 languages and dialects. Convenient, on-demand language access for your organization for only $1.49 per minute. You can sign up online and start using the services right away.
Language Support from Accentable Services
Does your organization provide meaningful language access? By focusing on the language needs of those you serve, you are better prepared to welcome anyone who can benefit from your products and services. And we'd like to help you do that. Accentable Services provides convenient, on-demand over-the-phone interpreting services at affordable rates. Sign up online and your organization can start taking advantage of our language support services right away.