After state-imposed budget reductions forced the elimination of one quarter of the Court’s staff, the Los Angeles Superior Court (LASC) radically restructured its operations which, in many instances, resulted in reduced services to the public. Since the end of the state budget cuts in 2013, LASC has been aggressively working to create the efficiencies necessary to restore those services.
One of the major goals of that restoration has been to enhance language access. The Court’s progress in this area was recently recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as they concluded their investigation of the Court’s provision of language services. The investigation was part of a multi-year, nationwide effort by DOJ’s Civil Rights Division to examine the provision of language services by courts, schools and other public institutions across the country. DOJ’s investigation into the Los Angeles Superior Court concluded with an agreement between DOJ and LASC that catalogues progress already made and lists improvements to be accomplished in the near future.
Of the agreement, Presiding Judge Carolyn B. Kuhl said, “The Los Angeles Superior Court has a long history of innovation in ensuring access to justice. We welcomed the opportunity to demonstrate how seriously we take this most important aspect of our mission: to provide access to justice to those with limited English proficiency. I believe that the approaches outlined in the agreement represent a state-of-the-art model for language services in state trial courts.”
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Categorized in: Legal Procedure
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