Senator Dave Min Introduces SB 1078

Senator Dave Min Introduces Legislation to Create New Office of Language Access

Senator Dave Min Introduces SB 1078

Tuesday, February 20, 2024 — (SACRAMENTO, CA) – Senator Dave Min (D-Irvine) announced today that he has introduced Senate Bill (SB) 1078 to establish the Office of Language Access (OLA) within the California Health and Human Services Agency (CalHHS). The OLA would be responsible for the oversight, accountability, and coordination of language access plans across CalHHS departments. Additionally, the OLA will serve as a central hub for building multilingual capacity within the state’s healthcare delivery system and ensure limited-English proficient individuals have access to government services. Not only will the OLA close an important gap for those seeking a broad spectrum of health services, the OLA will bolster California’s ability to meet statutory language requirements that apply to Medi-Cal health plans. 

“We can’t hide from the fact that Californians with limited English proficiency have poorer healthcare outcomes due to a severe lack of language access services in this state. The creation of a new Office of Language Access within CalHHS will be a game changer for these communities, especially for Asian American and Pacific Islanders,” said Senator Min, Vice Chair of the AAPI Legislative Caucus. “I am proud to work with a strong coalition of supporters on SB 1078 and the partnership will help to ensure that California’s diversity is reflected in every aspect of the state’s health services.”    

SB 1078 is sponsored the following AAPI organizations who serve on the front lines of the health and advocacy sectors in California: 

“While language access has been a top factor in access to quality health care, we saw many limited English-speaking populations, including Asian American and Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander communities, unable to access critical services during COVID-19 in their language,” said Asian Health Services CEO Julia Liou. “We applaud Senator Min for his leadership on SB 1078, which will ensure that the state’s commitment and vision for improving the delivery of language access can be fully realized.”  

“Although California has many legal requirements and policies to ensure that limited English-proficient populations are provided with language assistance services, including oral or interpreter services and written materials or translation services, many have yet to be provided such critical assistance and suffer serious health disparities. SB 1078 will help address these longstanding health inequities,” said Doreena Wong, Policy Director at Asian Resource, Inc. 

“SB 1078 will help institutionalize CalHHS’ and the Governor’s historic efforts to advance equity and improve language services for Californians with limited English proficiency. Establishing an Office of Language Access will ensure community stakeholders have an opportunity to provide input on agency language access plans and better address the needs of community members with limited English proficiency,” said Priscilla Huang, Executive Director at the Center for Asian Americans in Action.  

“As a mental health and social service provider to 80,000 community members in Orange County, we have seen firsthand the importance of accessing critical social services and programming in the languages that our communities speak. Language access not only facilitates communication but bridges important cultural gaps. SB 1078 will support needed coordination across health departments in language access planning that will impact our communities’ overall health and well-being,” said Mary Anne Foo, Executive Director of Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) 

Nearly 6.4 Californians speak more than 200 languages and comprise the largest population of people with limited English proficiency in the United States. The California Health and Human Services Agency oversees the state’s aging, child support services, emergency medical services, healthcare services, public health, social services, and state hospital system.  

For more information contact


Asian Health Services  

Founded in 1974, Asian Health Services (AHS) is a federally qualified community health center that provides primary, dental, and behavioral health services to 50,000 underserved patients of Alameda County in 12 Asian languages including Cantonese, Vietnamese, Mandarin, Khmer, Korean, Tagalog, Mien, Lao, Mongolian, Karen, Karenni, and Burmese. A community hub, AHS strengthens and empowers its patients and community through the highest quality care, advocacy, and community programs. A nationally recognized community care model, AHS is at the forefront of quality and innovation. 

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