In response to the coverage on the case of Marcelo Lucero, “Throw out lawsuit by Lucero family” [Letters, Nov. 27], it is the obligation of the Suffolk County Police Department to protect all residents, regardless of race, ethnicity, language or gender, and one of the biggest holes in the department’s police work is language access.
While Suffolk police have added several policies meant to improve access for non-English-speakers in recent years, community members say that these are not a priority of commanding officers and therefore are not followed by patrol or desk officers.
Equality under the law isn’t voluntary—it’s ensured by the Constitution. To prevent hate crimes such as Lucero’s tragic death, Suffolk police need to provide equal protection and due process to all residents, regardless of what language they speak. Not only does the department need comprehensive and effective language-access policies, but commanding officers need to make sure those policies are being put into practice.
Jessica Glynn, Central Islip
Editor’s note: The writer is the supervising attorney for Services for the Advancement of Women at Touro Law Center and a member of the Long Island Language Advocates Coalition.