Mayor Garcetti signs directive to improve English learners’ access to LA city services

LOS Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti recently signed Executive Directive 32, which seeks to improve access to city information and services for English language learners.

“Los Angeles is a place of belonging where everyone can, and should, feel comfortable engaging in our civic process,” said Garcetti in a statement. “This new directive will help to ensure that all Angelenos have equal access to what our City has to offer — for example, providing non-English speakingA immigrant business owners and parents with the ability to apply for grants from the City and enroll their children in one of our many youth programs.”

Executive Directive 32: Strengthening Language Access in the City of Los Angeles will require every city department to implement a plan to handle language access matters, including constituents’ requests for services in different languages and how information is disseminated to reach non-English speaking communities.

During the signing on December 16, the mayor was joined by representatives of various city departments, including LA Board of Public Works Commissioner Jessica Caloza, the first Filipina American in the role.

The Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles is providing critical support to launch and build out this effort.

“The Mayor’s Fund partners with government, philanthropy, community-based non-profits, and individual Angelenos to support initiatives that deliver true impact,” said Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles President & CEO Deidre Lind. “We are proud to support this initiative, which is a huge step toward ensuring City Hall equitably serves all Angelenos.”

Through this directive, all departments must designate a liaison who will participate in a Citywide Language Access Working Group led by a Language Access Coordinator. The Working Group will focus on improving access to City information, programs, and services for Angelenos who do not speak English or have a limited understanding of the language.

Los Angeles is home to 538,800 immigrant residents designated as English Language learners, who represent over 37% of the immigrant Angeleno population. This directive seeks to ensure that those Angelenos have equal access to information and services.

Most recently, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Garcetti launched multilingual rapid response efforts to ensure that all Angelenos had access to life-saving information and resources. n

 

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