Anne Purcell


February 3, 2008

It's a basic horror story: due to an unfortunate episode, you find yourself in need of urgent medical attention. You are throbbing with severe pain, the worst you've ever felt, and you don't know why. All you need is help.

The problem is you're in a foreign place where no one understands what you are saying because they do not know your language. You can't explain what is wrong, where it hurts, how it happened, and the frustration and fear -- in a world where no one understands you -- deepens.

The Latino and Hispanic population in Indiana grew by 31 percent between 2000 and 2005, according to a study in the July 2007 issue of InContext. Among the most recent Latino immigrants to enter this country and live in Indiana mentioned in the study, 57 percent either speak English "not well" or "not at all."

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