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Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif)

SALINAS, CA – Today, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) wrote a letter to the Small Business Administration (SBA) urging the agency to immediately provide Spanish-language online resources for small business owners seeking coronavirus-related assistance through the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.

Congress passed and the President signed into law H.R. 6074, the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, which provides the SBA additional funding and authority to make low-interest loans available to businesses facing economic harm from COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, through the EIDL program.  The administration acted quickly to set up a process for states to apply for COVID-19 disaster loan eligibility.  However, administration web pages related to COVID-19 guidance and resources, and pages to apply for COVID-19 EIDL loans, specifically, are only presented in English

“For many hardworking businessowners across a range of industries on the central coast of California who have limited English proficiency, this lack of Spanish-language resources could prevent them from receiving critical emergency assistance, forcing them to lay off workers or close permanently,” Congressman Panetta wrote.  

Full text of the letter here and below, in English and in Spanish:

Dear Administrator Carranza:

I write to you urging the Small Business Administration (SBA) to immediately provide Spanish-language online resources for small business owners seeking coronavirus-related assistance through the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.

Congress passed and the President signed into law H.R. 6074, the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, which provides the SBA additional funding and authority to make low-interest loans available to businesses facing economic harm from COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, through the EIDL program.

SBA acted quickly to set up a process for states to apply for COVID-19 disaster loan eligibility, and I am grateful that SBA further streamlined the process for statewide declarations.

Unfortunately, SBA web pages related to COVID-19 guidance and resources, and pages to apply for COVID-19 EIDL loans, specifically, are only presented in English.

For many hardworking businessowners across a range of industries on the central coast of California who have limited English proficiency, this lack of Spanish-language resources could prevent them from receiving critical emergency assistance, forcing them to lay off workers or close permanently.

Thankfully, SBA has previously taken steps to create a Spanish-language version of most of the pages on its website.  It can and should do the same now for new COVID-19 materials and the EIDL loan application process, in addition to providing Spanish-speaking SBA loan officers.

Your attention to this matter is greatly appreciated by Spanish-speaking businessowners across the Central Coast

En Español:

Estimada Administradora Carranza:

Le escribo para incitar a la Administración de Pequeñas Empresas (SBA) a que proporcione de inmediato recursos en línea en español para los propietarios de pequeñas empresas que buscan asistencia relacionada con el coronavirus a través del programa de Préstamos por Desastre Económico por Lesiones (EIDL) de SBA.

El Congreso aprobó y el Presidente promulgó la ley H.R. 6074, the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, que proporciona a SBA fondos y autoridad adicionales para otorgar préstamos a bajo interés a las empresas que enfrentan daños económicos por COVID-19, el nuevo coronavirus, a través del programa EIDL.

SBA actuó rápidamente para establecer un proceso para que los estados soliciten la elegibilidad para el préstamo por desastre COVID-19, y estoy agradecido de que SBA haya simplificado aún más el proceso para las declaraciones estatales.

Desafortunadamente, las páginas web de SBA relacionadas con la orientación y los recursos de COVID-19, y las páginas para solicitar préstamos COVID-19 EIDL, específicamente, solo se presentan en inglés.

Para muchos empresarios que trabajan duro en una variedad de industrias en la costa central de California que tienen un dominio limitado del inglés, esta falta de recursos en español podría evitar que reciban asistencia crítica de emergencia, obligándolos a despedir trabajadores o cerrar permanentemente.

Afortunadamente, SBA ha tomado medidas para crear una versión en español de la mayoría de las páginas de su sitio web. Puede y debe hacer lo mismo ahora para los nuevos materiales COVID-19 y el proceso de solicitud de préstamo EIDL, además de proporcionar oficiales de préstamos de SBA de habla hispana.

Los empresarios de habla hispana en toda la costa central aprecian mucho su atención a este asunto.

MIL OSI USA News