chapter  4
34 Pages

Language Assistance and Voter Assistance since 1975

The Voting Rights Act included another important mandate to help non-English-speaking voters overcome the disabling effects of English-only elections. Title III of the 1975 amendments was “specifically directed to the problems of ‘language minority groups.’”1 Codified in Section 203, it differed from the special provisions in Section 4(f)(4) in a key respect. “The line between … [the two] is based upon the severity of voting discrimination against … language minorities. The evidence … demonstrates that the voting problems of language minority groups are not uniform in all parts of the country.” Section 4(f)(4) included more severe restrictions based on evidence of both voting discrimination and the effects of educational discrimination.2