Today, the United States Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) takes a significant step towards increasing accessibility for the Asian American community by releasing translated materials for its 2023 statutory enforcement report. The report, " The Federal Response to Anti-Asian Racism in the United States" provides comprehensive insights on the rise of anti-Asian hate crimes from 2019 through 2021 and the federal role in preventing and enforcing federal hate crime laws.
The report's press release, letter of transmittal, and executive summary are now available in the top five Asian languages spoken at home in the U.S. according to the 2019 Census. These translated materials include Mandarin (Chinese Simplified), Cantonese (Chinese Traditional), and Vietnamese versions of the press release, letter of transmittal, and executive summary.
According to Commission Chair, Rochelle Mercedes Garza, "Language accessibility is critical for communicating with impacted communities. We know that language barriers prevent the reporting of hate crimes or incidents, such as racial slurs or being spat on. The translation of these materials shows the Commission's commitment to increasing accessibility for the Asian American community."
Additionally, the report's key recommendation aligns with the Commission's release on November 15, 2023, of an updated federal agency language access plan, coinciding with the one-year anniversary of Attorney General Merrick B. Garland's language access memorandum to federal agencies.
The updated language access plan showcases the Commission's dedication to providing more reports and agency events with appropriate language access through translation and interpretation services.