As part of the City of Boise’s Limited English Proficiency Assessments (LEP), the Public Works Department has developed the following plan to provide meaningful access to its services for LEP populations. The plan will be updated on a biennial basis.
Public Works LEP Assessment and Plan
Four Factor Analysis
- The number or proportion of LEP persons served or encountered in the eligible service population. The number or proportion of LEP persons encountered is the same as that in the general population of the City of Boise.
- The frequency with which LEP individuals come in contact with the program. In the past year, Public Works staff have had regular contact with LEP individuals, usually through utility billing services. Of staff interviewed, all have had contact with at least one LEP individual and 80% have had contacts 10 or more times a month. The languages spoken by these LEP individuals included Spanish, Somali, Arabic, Serbo-Croatian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, French, Vietnamese, Russian, Farsi, and Swahili.
- The nature and importance of the program, activity or service provided by the recipient to people’s lives. The Public Works Department primarily encounters LEP individuals through their utility billing services. The services offered through Public Works are important to all residents of the City of Boise as these utilities support the health and livability of their residences.
- The resources available to the recipient and the costs. One staff member in utility billing is fluent in Spanish. Another staff member is fluent in Serbo-Croatian. The Department has “I Speak” language cards available at all department front offices and in utility billing. The Department also has an account with Language Line Solutions to provide telephone translations and uses the Boise Police Department Interpreter Program, for in-person, over the phone, and document translations. Additionally, Google translate has been installed for use on the Department’s website.
Public Works frequently surveys its staff for instances of direct or indirect contact with LEP individuals. Public Works also has “I Speak” cards available at front desks throughout all department offices and divisions.
Public Works will continue to locate “I Speak” cards at front desks. Public Works has Google Translate installed on its website and staff in utility billing have Google Translate bookmarked on their computers. Public Works also has access to Language Line Solutions. Citizens often bring friends and family to provide informal interpretation services, but Public Works accesses Language Line Solutions when more formal interpretation is necessary for effective communication. Public Works is also determining which vital documents to translate into Spanish.
In addition to the training provided by the City, Public Works will ensure that its staff understands its Title VI LEP responsibilities. Staff will also receive specific training on what language assistance services the City of Boise offers and specific procedures to be followed when encountering LEP persons.
Public Works will continue to provide notice on its website and in its outreach materials that language assistance is available upon request. In addition, a notice in Spanish has been posted in front lobbies of publicly accessed facilities explaining that language assistance is available upon request.
Public Works will continue to monitor and update this plan on a regular basis, but not less than triennially. At minimum, Public Works will examine how many LEP persons were encountered and determine if their needs were met. Public Works will also continue to review its documents to determine if any of them should be translated into other languages and to determine if more program-specific outreach should be undertaken. It will also look at any complaints received and learn how to better serve the LEP population through those complaints.
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