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‘Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt’ Should Be a Red Flag for Local Governments When It Comes to Sign-Language Interpreting

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 21, 2017

If you’ve been on social media lately, you’re likely familiar with the “Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt,” who by now is as omnipresent on Twitter as “The Man in the Yellow Hat” is in children’s books.

The differences between the two could not be starker. Whereas the latter is a rational-minded fictional character that chased after Curious George and cleaned up after his mayhem, the former is no laughing matter, as he could have inadvertently caused real-life mayhem of his own despite his best efforts to be helpful.

The Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt has endured a great deal of ridicule, but the responsibility for using a qualified interpreter truly lies with the public entity whose constituency relies upon it to build language access into its overall communication strategy.

Here is what happened:

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Five Retail Insights on Multicultural Buying Habits

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 21, 2017

“Minority” consumers won’t be in the minority for much longer in the United States. Asian-Americans, African Americans and Hispanics already make up a majority of the population in four states and the District of Columbia, and several other states are nearly there. By 2055, the U.S. will not have a single racial or ethnic majority, according to the Pew Research Center.

Given the current size and future growth of these consumer groups as a larger part of the market and growth opportunities, market research firms are making a careful study of the buying habits of multicultural consumers. Paying attention to multicultural buying habits, as well as the media and cultural preferences of these populations, will benefit retailers now and in the future, as these statistics show.

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Census: More than 20 percent of U.S. residents speak a language other than English at home

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 20, 2017

More than one in five people living in America speaks a language other than English at home, while more than one in 10 speaks Spanish, according to the latest United States Census Bureau American Community Survey.

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Report Shows Diverse Language Preferences Among Insurance Consumers

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 18, 2017

If your insurance plan is preparing for open enrollment, you could be missing opportunities to reach new customers from diverse populations if you aren’t speaking their language.

Recent data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services reveal telling insights on the language preferences of consumers who enrolled in HealthCare.gov. These statistics are based on self-reported data from last year’s enrollment period for all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Here are some key things providers should know about language preferences among insurance consumers.

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16 Stats That Show The Language Access Needs of Medicare Beneficiaries

Posted by Mike McMahon on September 5, 2017

Communication is an important part of health literacy, so it’s not surprising that Medicare beneficiaries with challenges in this area are at a greater risk for poor health outcomes.

Removing those barriers tends to improve health outcomes and may even contribute to higher CMS star ratings, which impact an organization’s reputation and reimbursement.

A recent report by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Office of Minority Health presents useful data that can help prescription drug and health plans better understand Medicare beneficiaries and their language needs.

Here are 16 telling statistics and what they mean for providers.

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Hispanic Student Enrollment in U.S. Doubled Over Last 20 Years

Posted by Scott Brown on September 1, 2017

Labor Day Weekend typically signifies the end of summer and the start of a new school year.  As our kids fill their backpacks, pose for first-day pictures, and board school buses, it’s worth visiting a rather remarkable statistic released this week by the United States Census Bureau:

Hispanic student enrollment in U.S. schools has more than doubled in the last 20 years (1996-2016).

According to the Census Bureau, the number of Hispanic students enrolled in U.S. schools and colleges soared from 8.8 million in 1996 to 17.8 million in 2016 – a 102 percent increase. 

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What Does Meaningful Access Really Mean?­­

Posted by Greg Holt on August 30, 2017

Nearly all government agencies and organizations that receive federal funds are required by law to provide limited-English-proficient (LEP) persons “meaningful access” to their services.

What exactly does that mean?  Where did this requirement come from?

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Case Study: Texas Town Sets Language-Access Example

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on August 25, 2017

Houston is a city whose staggering growth and immigration have made it the most ethnically diverse major metropolis in the country, surpassing New York seven years ago.

U.S. Census figures indicate that 37 percent of the Houston metro area population age 5 and over speaks a language other than English at home, with nearly 150 total languages spoken by local residents. The Brookings Institute estimates that 17.8 percent of the region’s population is considered limited English proficient, meaning they speak the language “less than very well.”

Writes the Los Angeles Times:

Census projections have opened a window into the America of 2050, “and it’s Houston today,” said Stephen Klineberg, a sociology professor at Rice University.

Houston suburbs are among the fastest-growing cities in the country. This includes the community of Katy, which is located 29 miles west of Houston. As the ethnic complexion of Katy changes, so must the area’s school district, emergency services, and businesses.

Katy has embraced the shift, providing an excellent language-access example.

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Evaluating Video Remote Interpreting Providers: 5 Factors To Consider

Posted by Scott Brown on August 24, 2017

More companies are recognizing the power of video remote interpreting (VRI) as a way to connect with people face-to-face. It’s especially useful for communicating with people who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as in situations when more personal interaction is needed but an onsite interpreter is not available.

As demand for this service increases, the number of video remote interpreting providers in the market is likely to grow as well. How can you be sure your organization chooses the right one?

Here are five important factors to consider.

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What Code of Conduct Do Language Interpreters and Translators Follow?

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on August 23, 2017

Organizations often seek language services when there’s a lot at stake, for instance: health emergencies, legal proceedings, business dealings and government interactions with the public. The language translators and interpreters who provide these services are professionals who should be held to high standards given the importance of their work.

Over the years, professional associations and language services agencies have developed codes of conduct and ethics to guide their work. If you have ever wondered about the standards that guide the translators and interpreters you hire, here’s a quick overview.

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