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MMTC Seeks Spanish-Language Version of FCC’s EAS Handbook - Broadcasting & Cable

MMTC Seeks Spanish-Language Version of FCC’s EAS Handbook

Minority Media & Telecommunications Council Calls Federal Communications Commission’s Emergency Alert System Handbook ‘Welcome Step’
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The Minority Media & Telecommunications Council and other minority-advocacy organizations asked the Federal Communications Commission to publish a Spanish-language version of its recently released Emergency Alert System handbook, saying that not to do so could endanger Spanish-speaking people and potentially non-Spanish speakers, as well.

While the MMTC called the release of the handbook a "welcome step," it suggested that the step was not as welcoming to a key target population -- the almost 20 million U.S. residents who speak Spanish in their homes.

In addition, wrote David Honig -- counsel to the MMTC, as well as the Independent Spanish Broadcasters Association and the United Church of Christ -- "some broadcast employees who might be on duty during an emergency are not fluent in English."

Without a Spanish-language version of the handbook, Honig argued, "a portion of our population is left vulnerable to the life-or-death consequences of natural disasters, threats and attacks to our country."

An FCC official said he was checking on the status of the request.

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