NJ forcing business to use other languages is dead wrong (Opinion)
New Jersey has bought itself a lawsuit with a ridiculous law that was quietly passed. Signed by progressive Gov. Phil Murphy it requires credit reports by companies such as TransUnion and Equifax be made available in languages other than English.
To be specific, it mandates the credit bureaus make their reports "upon the consumer's request in Spanish or any other language that the Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs determines is the first language of a significant number of consumers in the State.”
The lawsuit is filed by a trade association representing Equifax, TransUnion and Experian and hopes to block the new law. They say it violates the First Amendment in that it compels speech in other languages. The suit claims it is preempted by the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act).
Some are livid over the filing. Chi Chi Wu is an attorney with the National Consumer Law Center and said to NJ.com, “Apparently, immigrants are not welcome here when it comes to the credit bureaus. Rather than take the simple step of translating credit reports and providing access to tens of thousands of New Jerseyans with limited English skills, they’ve chosen to file this lawsuit.”
Or immigrants could take the logical step of learning our common language when they come here.
To force any private business to conduct itself in other languages at the whim of the government is a first as far as I'm aware. Sure, government has done it for years. You can take your driver's test in many other languages. Government forms will be offered in Spanish. Things like this are true. But now we're talking private business, and even though credit ratings may soon be taken into account for immigrants under an on-hold rule by Homeland Security (there's a court fight over it) I see it as a cheap excuse for government to begin its language overreach into all private companies.
Is there any New Jersey law that says it's illegal for certain neighborhoods to have their store signs only in Spanish since a certain number of people in the neighborhood might actually speak English? Where's the hue and cry for that law? Enough already. If government wants to make life perpetually easy for immigrants to wallow in their home language and never fully assimilate by learning English that's up to them. But they should keeps their hands off private companies and businesses should be allowed to let the market dictate their choices, not the government.
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