Rozic, Ramos Announce Passage of Legislation to Provide Language Access Services to Injured Employees

Queens, NY -- Today, Assemblymember Nily Rozic (D-Queens) and Senator Jessica Ramos (D Queens) announced the passage of their legislation (A5609/S6069). The legislation addresses the  language access needs of workers with limited English proficiency, specifically focusing on  cases involving worker injury. The bill aligns the language access standards within the workers’  compensation law with those determined in the executive law. The bill passed both houses of the  legislature with bipartisan support

“In a state as diverse as New York, it is crucial that the needs of all employees, regardless of  their English proficiency, are served. These workers often work physically taxing jobs that pose  injury risks,” said Assemblymember Rozic. “By ensuring consistency across agencies, we are  providing transparency and easier access to workers’ compensation benefits to the many  employees across the state whose first language is not English.” 

“Support that the State is able to offer is only valuable if people know about it. AM Rozic and I  represent some of the diverse zip codes in the entire country, and we know that policy is only as  good as its implementation. I’m proud that the legislature was able to expand language access in  this way, and look forward to this bill moving to the Governor’s desk,” said State Senator  Jessica Ramos. 

“As immigrant workers continue to be amongst the most vulnerable to workplace hazards,  language accessibility must always be a top priority for policymakers," Asian American  Federation Executive Director, Jo-Ann Yoo, said. "We are grateful to Assembly Member  Rozic and Senator Ramos for demonstrating their concern for our most susceptible populations  and emphasizing the need for clear, consistent, and impactful regulations that address language  access. Our immigrant workers, the drivers of our state's economy, deserve nothing less.” 

“The Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF) applaud the State Assembly  and Senate for passing Assembly Member Rozic and Senator Ramos' bill A5609/S609 that will  help ensure Limited English Proficient (LEP) injured workers are provided necessary language  access services in order to receive their Workers' Compensation benefits,” said Vanessa Leung  and Anita Gundanna, Co-Directors of CACF. “Language barriers are a huge obstacle faced by  many folks in immigrant communities and can prevent them from accessing essential services.  Workers Compensation is a critical program for the wellbeing of injured workers and this bill  helps ensure that LEP injured workers receive the benefits they are entitled to. Proper language access is necessary to achieve health equity and this bill is an important step towards a more  equitable health care system.” 

“It is critically important that immigrant and low-income workers — often supporting their  families by performing the most dangerous tasks in the workplace — have equitable access to  workers’ compensation,” said Thomas Yu, Executive Director of Asian Americans for  Equality (AAFE). “We are grateful to Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Ramos for their  leadership on this issue, defending the rights of community members with limited English  proficiency.” 

This legislation builds on a similar bill previously passed by Assemblymember Rozic and  Senator Ramos requiring the workers' compensation board to provide translations of certain  documents and forms. 



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