Justice Department visits local courts over language access

Justice Department visits local courts over language access

- in Uncategorized
February 29, 2008 – 2:16PM

GRAHAM – Members of the U.S. Department of Justice toured dif-ferent Alamance County courts this week as part of a statewide investigation into whether people with limited English proficiency have equal access to court services.

The Coordination and Review Section of the department’s Civil Rights Division announced last May that it planned to investigate the N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts in response to a complaint filed in 2006 by local attorney Ebher Rossi Jr.

In the complaint, Rossi claimed that non-English speakers, specifically Hispanics, received unequal treatment based on their country of origin by the Administrative Office of the Courts, the government body that oversees the courts in the state.

Alamance County Chief District Court Judge Jim Roberson said Thursday that two representatives with the Department of Justice visited Alamance County courts Monday and Wednesday.

“They were doing an evaluation of our state policy and individual court” services, Roberson said, adding that the representatives were making similar site visits in other judicial districts across the state, including Wake County.  (more…)