SOURCE: U.S.English

U.S.English

January 13, 2016 11:49 ET

New Poll Numbers Lead U.S.English Chairman to Call on Congress to Act on Official English Policy

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - January 13, 2016) - U.S.English Chairman Mauro E. Mujica today made a renewed call to Members of Congress, urging them to enact an Official English policy, in response to new poll numbers showing overwhelming support for the English language among immigrants to the United States.

In a poll conducted by Harris Interactive, commissioned by Express Employment Professionals, results found that immigrants overwhelmingly (88% of those polled) believe that the English language is critical to success in the United States. The survey also found that immigrants have a strong desire to learn the English language, with 77% of respondents who spoke little or no English when arriving in America saying they became fluent in the language since arriving here.

"These poll numbers show the wide-reaching support for legislation that would declare English the official language of the United States," Chairman Mujica said. "Polls consistently show that a majority of Americans support Official English, with recent numbers coming in as high as 87 percent. But these new numbers from Harris Interactive are especially significant, as they indicate support for English as our nation's common language among those who would be directly impacted by an Official English policy -- English language learners themselves. Immigrants recognize the value that English proficiency brings on social and economic levels, and it is past time that the U.S. government takes action to help these newcomers become fluent as quickly as possible."

The English Language Unity Act, H.R. 997 and S. 678, is currently awaiting action in both the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, respectively. This bill would declare English the official language of the United States government, adding an additional incentive for non-English speakers to learn the nation's common language, for their own benefit. In addition, the bill would prevent taxpayer dollars from being used on costly and duplicative government translations.

"I encourage Congress to listen to the voice of the American people and move the English Language Unity Act toward passage," Chairman Mujica added. "The United States was built, powered and made great by immigrants who came here legally and learned English. It is past time that our nation recognizes an official language policy that supports this by declaring English our common, unifying language."

The online survey was conducted by Harris Interactive in multiple languages, including English, Spanish and Chinese, on behalf of Express Employment Professionals in October 2015.

U.S.English, Inc. is the nation's oldest and largest non-partisan citizens' action group dedicated to preserving the unifying role of the English language in the United States. Founded in 1983 by the late Sen. S.I. Hayakawa of California, U.S.English, Inc. (www.usenglish.org) now has more than 2 million members.

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