Villa measure establishing language access framework heads to governor

SPRINGFIELD – A measure championed by State Senator Karina Villa that would ensure people whose primary language is not English have access to essential state services is one step closer to becoming law.

“State agencies are here to serve everyone,” said Villa (D-West Chicago). “Our state is home to hundreds of diverse communities that deserve to be adequately represented in state functions.”

Senate Bill 3762 would require the Governor’s Office of New Americans, alongside relevant agencies and the Illinois Department of Human Services, to prepare a language needs assessment to identify languages spoken across the state. This partnership would then support state agencies in the development of language accessibility plans to provide comprehensive language assistance for access to information, programs, services and activities.

“We must ensure all communities benefit equally and equitably from state resources, and language access is necessary to do so,” said Villa. “This initiative will address a need for thousands of people across our state.”

Senate Bill 3762 passed the House on Thursday and now heads to the governor for further consideration.