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Does Your Agency do Enough for Limited English Speakers?

Does Your Agency do Enough for Limited English SpeakersA new policy that will provide language assistance services to those who do not speak English fluently is being developed in the state of Washington. As there have been civil rights complaints from injured workers whose primary languages weren’t English, multiple government agencies are taking action. As these policies are implemented, NJ Workers’ Comp insurance agents should be aware of what’s going on in other states and be prepared for changes in New Jersey.

The Washington state Department of Labor & Industries has reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Labor to provide language assistance services for injured workers who speak limited English, according to Business Insurance.

This decision is a direct result from complaints from injured workers who claimed they were discriminated against when they were denied translation and interpreting services to provide vital information in their native languages.

The “language access policy” will provide complimentary services to injured workers who might not speak English fluently. This service extends to verbal and written translation of important claim documents and application forms for the claimants.

In order to expedite the process, Labor & Industries is required to provide progress reports on the policy to ensure prompt completion.

Annette L. Hayes, U.S. attorney for the western district of Washington, said “Navigating a system of government benefits can be daunting for anyone. This is particularly so for members of our community who are applying for Workers’ Compensation benefits and whose primary language is not English. The changes to Washington’s Labor & Industries practices set forth in this settlement agreement will ensure all workers’ rights are protected regardless of their country of origin.”

Associated Specialty Insurance Agency (ASIA) is dedicated to accommodating your Workers’ Comp needs. For over twenty years, our comprehensive solutions have exclusively targeted the Workers’ Compensation component of business like yours throughout our target states of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida. To learn more about our operation, contact us today at (866) 679-7457.

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