Over 200 participants from the CNMI Judiciary, CNMI Bar Association, CNMI-based interpreters, and other government agencies went through a six-day language access training.
Debi S. Tulang-De Silva, program director of the Hawaii State Judiciary’s Office on Equality and Access to the Courts, led the training that took place from Jan. 12 to 17.
Among those who attended were representatives of the U.S. District Court for the NMI, the Office of the Attorney General, the Office of the Public Defender, the Office of Personnel Management, Micronesian Legal Services Corp.n, Department of Public Safety, Department of Public Lands, Department of Labor, Department of Corrections, Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, Commonwealth Utilities Corp., Commonwealth Ports Authority, and Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.
The training covered topics that included language access laws and the impact of mandates, integration of language access for services, and working effectively with interpreters.
The NMI Judiciary’s Language Access Plan and Policy is consistent with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin. It is the policy of the Judiciary to provide timely, meaningful, and equal access to programs, services, and information to Limited English Proficient and Deaf and Hard of Hearing persons. Covering standards for qualified interpreters and translators, trained court staff and judges, LAPP was made possible through the efforts of the CNMI Judiciary, the CNMI Bar Association, the Office of the Attorney General, the Office of the Public Defender, and other entities. (PR)