N.Y. Gives Voter Help in Spanish, Not Yiddish

Attorney General Says Voting Rights Specifies Spanish Materials

By Seth Berkman

Published October 11, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Spanish-speaking voters in Rockland and Ulster counties in New York will receive assistance at the polls this November to ensure an easy process for casting their ballots. Similar concessions, however, have not been made for the large Yiddish-speaking population of Hasidic Jews in the upstate counties.

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced that bilingual Spanish/English materials and interpreters will be available before and during election day on November 6.

Schneiderman was acting in accordance with Section 4(e) of the Voting Rights Act, which requires that “certain Spanish-speaking voters be provided bilingual ballots, bilingual election-related materials and language assistance at the polls.”

According to the 2010 Census, 5.5 million voters in the state do not speak English as a primary language. That number would include large communities of Hasidim who speak Yiddish as a primary language, along with Jewish immigrants from the former Soviet Union who speak Russian.

One of the largest Hasidic communities is in Orange County, which adjoins Rockland.

Last month, Schenectady County’s Board of Elections entered into a similar agreement. Friday is the last day to register to vote for the 2012 general election.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • A grumpy Jewish grandfather is wary of his granddaughter's celebrating Easter with the in-laws. But the Seesaw says it might just make her appreciate Judaism more. What do you think?
  • “Twist and Shout.” “Under the Boardwalk.” “Brown-Eyed Girl.” What do these great songs have in common? A forgotten Jewish songwriter. We tracked him down.
  • What can we learn from tragedies like the rampage in suburban Kansas City? For one thing, we must keep our eyes on the real threats that we as Jews face.
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • What could be wrong with a bunch of guys kicking back with a steak and a couple of beers and talking about the Seder? Try everything. #ManSeder
  • BREAKING: Smirking killer singled out Jews for death in suburban Kansas City rampage. 3 die in bloody rampage at JCC and retirement home.
  • Real exodus? For Mimi Minsky, it's screaming kids and demanding hubby on way down to Miami, not matzo in the desert.
  • The real heroines of Passover prep aren't even Jewish. But the holiday couldn't happen without them.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?








You may also be interested in our English-language newsletters:













We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.