Villa measure to ensure language access passes Senate

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Karina Villa passed a measure that would ensure people who are English language learners have access to essential state services Friday.

“Diverse communities across our state deserve to be adequately represented by state agencies that are here to serve all residents,” said Villa (D-West Chicago). “It is our duty to ensure that individuals are fully informed and able to access government functions, making language access essential.”

Senate Bill 3762 would require the Governor’s Office of New Americans, alongside relevant agencies and the 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.

“Language access is a need that communities have expressed for years,” said Villa. “Meaningful access will ensure that all communities benefit equitably from state resources.”

Senate Bill 3762 passed the Senate Friday and moves to the House for further consideration.