State Sen. Kathleen Wilcoxson has filed legislation declaring English as the official language of Oklahoma. Wilcoxson, R-Oklahoma City, said she filed the bill at the request of numerous citizens.
“The concern here is the need to recognize that English is the language in which we conduct state business,” Wilcoxson said. “This legislative proposal simply clarifies that need and places it in our statutes.”
Under SB 38, state agencies, local governments or other political subdivisions cannot be forced to provide any documents, information, literature, or other written materials in any language other than English. Those entities could provide materials in another language if they chose to do so.
“Oklahoma is a state made up of our own native residents and people from many other nations. The mix of cultural traditions and various languages are part of our identity as Oklahomans and are something to be shared and celebrated,” Wilcoxson said. “However, we all should realize the necessity of learning and using English as our common language. It is something that brings us together. It is that unification that I want to promote with this legislation.”
SB 38 will be considered when the 2007 session formally gets underway in February.