English Official N.C. Language

The United States doesn't have an official language but North Carolina apparently does. General Statute145-12 designates English as the official language. But what does that mean? English only is not mandated; the court system, as well as many businesses, law enforcement agencies and health care services offer foreign language literature as well as translators for people who don't speak English. Javier Castillo is a bilingual Greenville businessman and sits on the governor's council on Hispanic affairs. Castillo says everyone knows English is the official language, and says it's a growing non-English speaking population in the U.S. and Eastern Carolina, that may be fueling fears. According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2000, eight percent or more than 600,000 people in our state spoke a language other than English at home. Let us know what you think of this statute. Check out our news blog and give us your thoughts.