WXXI AM News

Federal inspectors check out bilingual accommodations at some local polling places

Nov 7, 2017

Credit www.justice.gov

Polling places around Monroe County have  some additional inspections on Election Day -- staffers from the U.S. Justice Department.

County Democratic Elections Commissioner Tom Ferrarese says this is just part of an ongoing program from the federal government, mainly focusing on communities around the U.S. where there is a significant part of the population that is non-English speaking.

Ferrarese says since Rochester has a high Spanish-speaking/Latino population, inspectors from Justice were in this area during the primary and are making a few stops on the general election day as well.

“Since we’ve had a program here for probably over 20 years now, well over 20 years, we have something in place and I think they’re just kind of reviewing it to make sure in fact that it meets all of the federal requirements, and we’re feeling pretty comfortable with that,” he told WXXI News.

Ferrarese says Monroe County already provides a number of Spanish-speaking interpreters and written materials and he thinks the county does pretty well in that regard, but he says they are always looking at ways to improve.

Ferrarese says Monroe is one of the first update counties the Justice Department inspectors have visited in recent years.