[lg policy] ‘Chinese interpreters most requested; Filipino the least’ By Ferdie De La Torre | Posted on Apr 18 2019

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Thu Apr 18 15:20:54 EDT 2019

‘Chinese interpreters most requested; Filipino the least’
By Ferdie De La Torre
Posted on Apr 18 2019 <https://www.saipantribune.com/index.php/2019/04/18/>
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Chinese language interpreters are the most requested in the CNMI Superior
Court, while Filipino or Tagalog interpreters are the least requested,
according to the NMI Judiciary’s Language Access Plan and Policy.

An analysis conducted on case filings and services required in the Superior
Court during calendar years 2012 through 2014 showed these results,
according to the LAPP.

It said the Chinese language interpreters was the most requested over the
three-year period at 87 percent, followed by Chuukese at 7 percent, Thai at
4 percent, and Filipino at 2 percent.

English, Chamorro, and Carolinian are officially recognized as the
languages for conducting business in the CNMI.

LAPP said the other languages in the CNMI include Japanese, Kosraean,
Korean, Marshallese, Palauan, Pohnpeian, Vietnamese, Yapese, and American
sign language.

The LAPP was one of the exhibits that the Office of the Public Defender
recently filed in court in support of its motion for a Filipino or Tagalog
interpreter for Alfonso Sebastian Parongan, a suspect in the murder of his
landlord in 2017.

Assistant public defender Heather M. Zona had questioned the court’s act
requiring the OPD to provide the Tagalog interpreter. She argues that
assigning OPD the task of finding interpreters violates both Commonwealth
law and Parongan’s constitutional and civil rights.


 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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