Code of the District of Columbia

§ 2–1932. Oral language services provided by covered entities.

(a) A covered entity shall provide oral language services to a person with limited or no-English proficiency who seeks to access or participate in the services, programs, or activities offered by the covered entity.

(b) A covered entity shall, at least annually, determine the type of oral language services needed based upon:

(1) The number or proportion of limited or no-English proficient persons of the population served or encountered, or likely to be served or encountered by the covered entity, in the District of Columbia;

(2) The frequency with which limited or no-English proficient individuals come into contact with the covered entity;

(3) The importance of the service provided by the covered entity; and

(4) The resources available to the covered entity.

(c)(1) In making the determination under subsection (b) of this section of the type of oral language services needed, the covered entity shall consult the following sources of data to determine the languages spoken and the number or proportion of limited or no-English proficient persons of the population that are served or encountered, or likely to be served or encountered, by the covered entity in the District of Columbia:

(A) The United States Census Bureau’s most current report entitled “Language Use and English Ability, Linguistic Isolation” (or any other successor report);

(B) Any other language-related information;

(C) Census data on language ability indicating that individuals speak English “less than very well”;

(D) Local census data relating to language use and English language ability;

(E) Other governmental data, including intake data collected by covered entities; data collected by the District of Columbia Public Schools; and data collected by and made available by District government offices that conduct outreach to communities with limited-English proficient populations and that serve as a liaison between the District government and limited-English proficient populations, such as the Office of Latino Affairs and the Office of Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs; and

(F) Data collected and made available by the D.C. Language Access Coalition.

(2) A covered entity shall annually collect data about the languages spoken and the number or proportion of limited or no-English proficient persons speaking a given language in the population that is served or encountered, or likely to be served or encountered, by the covered entity. A covered entity’s databases and tracking applications shall contain fields that will capture this information during the fiscal year that this subchapter takes effect with respect to the covered entity pursuant to § 2-1936. If it is demonstrated to the Office of Human Rights that this is not feasible due to budgetary constraints, a covered entity shall make all due efforts to comply with this paragraph by the beginning of the next fiscal year. All information collected under this section shall be provided to the Language Access Director and made available to the public, upon request, within a reasonable time.

(d) To the extent that a covered entity requires additional personnel to meet its requirement to provide oral language services based on the determination set forth in this section, the covered entity shall hire bilingual personnel into existing budgeted vacant public contact positions.


(June 19, 2004, D.C. Law 15-167, § 3, 51 DCR 4688.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 2-1934.