At the California Democratic Party Executive Board Meeting, the California Democratic Party Asian Pacific Islander Caucus and the California Democratic Party Executive Board took action in passing the following resolution:

Resolution Opposing the “English Only” City Council Meeting Proposal in the City of Walnut and Any Other California Cities or Counties

Whereas, diversity is the strength of California; in the City of Walnut in the east San Gabriel Valley area of Los Angeles County, the population consists of 63.6% Asian and Pacific Islanders and 19.1% Latinos, with 46.8% of the City’s population being foreign born;

Whereas, the City of Walnut has a history of blatant disregard for the needs of limited English proficient residents in the City, including having been sued by the U.S. Department of Justice for failing to provide in-language election materials and election-related assistance to limited English proficient voters as required by the federal Voting Rights Act;

Whereas, the City of Walnut is now considering the adoption of an “English Only” policy at its City Council Meetings, in which City Council Meeting proceedings would be conducted only in English, and non-English speakers wishing to participate in City Council proceedings would be required to provide their own interpreters, and that this discriminatory policy would hinder civic participation and access to the government for many residents and other cities and counties are experiencing the same issue;

Be It Resolved, that the California Democratic Party opposes the “English Only” policy of the Walnut City Council and any other cities and counties in California; and

Be It Further Resolved, that this resolution be transmitted to the U.S. Department of Justice, the Walnut City Council, the League of Cities, the Contract Cities Association, the California State Association of Counties, interested parties, and the media.

Authors:

Clark Lee
Chair, Asian Pacific Islander Caucus, California Democratic Party
Resident, City of Walnut

Eric C. Bauman
Vice Chair, California Democratic Party
Chair, Los Angeles County Democratic Party

Olivia Lee
Assembly District 55 Delegation Chair, Los Angeles County Democratic Party
Resident, City of Walnut

Arnold Lee
Democratic State Central Committee Member, Assembly District 55
Resident, City of Walnut

Adopted by the California Democratic Party Asian Pacific Islander Caucus, 7/28/12
Adopted by the California Democratic Party Executive Board, 7/29/12

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