More languages for Indiana driver’s manual in lawsuit deal

The Indiana driver’s manual will be translated into four more languages in order to settle a federal lawsuit.

The agreement will have the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles by March 2021 provide the manual in Arabic, Burmese, Mandarin and Chin, a language spoken in Myanmar.

That deal resolves a lawsuit filed last year by immigrant assistance group Neighbor to Neighbor of South Bend, which claimed the BMV was discriminating on the basis of a person’s national origin by providing the manual in only English and Spanish.

A federal judge in Indianapolis dismissed the lawsuit this past week after the settlement was reached between attorneys for the state and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana.

The BMV didn’t admit any discrimination in the agreement, which requires the new translations be available for free on the agency’s website.

The four new languages were picked for manual translations because an average of at least 500 people over the past three years have taken the driver’s knowledge exam using them, according to the agreement. That test is offered in 14 languages.

Additional translations must be provided in the future if other languages meet that threshold over a three-year period.

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