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THE ENGLISH ONLY BALLOT INITIATIVE RESOLUTION

Approved by the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee


Signed by Hon. Billy Fields,
Chair of the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee
July 23, 2008

RESOLUTION

The Davidson County Executive Committee opposes the “English Only” initiative, and
urges any resident of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville for whom English is not
a first language to enroll in such courses, as needed.

Whereas, English is the common and the unifying language of The United States of
America and the official and legal language of the Metropolitan Government of Davidson
County and the State of Tennessee; and

Whereas, new immigrants and refugees understand that learning English is a critical
factor in their ability to obtain gainful employment, to participate fully in the community,
and to qualify for citizenship in The United States of America; and

Whereas, new immigrants and refugees in Davidson County are enrolled


currently in record numbers in English language classes; and

Whereas, our community is a welcoming city that recognizes and that honors the
contributions of all its residents, wherever born, throughout American history; and

Whereas, the Metropolitan Government of Davidson County promotes and encourages


the investment of foreign companies in the community, and depends upon workers from
all backgrounds and countries; and

Whereas, the “English Only” ballot initiative will certainly be found to violate Federal
law and statutes, and cost the Metropolitan Government thousands of dollars to defend;
and

Whereas, the “English Only” ballot initiative that seeks to eliminate the use of all non—
English languages by the Metropolitan Government of Davidson County would create
confusion and make citizens less safe physically and mentally;

Now, Therefore,

Be It Resolved by the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee: That all


immigrants and refugees enroll in existing English learning opportunities, if and as
needed.
Be It Further Resolved that community groups, community centers, churches,
synagogues, mosques, and temples plus not-for-profit organizations and associations
expand their English learning opportunities.

Be It Further Resolved that immigrants, refugees and new citizens participate in the
activities of the Democratic Party and support Democratic candidates at all levels of
government.

Be It Further Resolved that the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee is


on record opposing the “English Only” ballot initiative and urges its representatives to
refrain from returning the petition post cards.

Be It Further Resolved that the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee


encourages its representatives to speak against the “English Only” ballot initiative to
citizens in their respective districts.

Be It Further Resolved that the Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee


advises anyone who has signed the “English Only” petition to contact the Davidson
County Election Commission and to request that his/her name be removed.

Be It Further Resolved that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to Mayor Karl Dean
and Vice-Mayor Diane Neighbors of the Metropolitan Government of Davidson County,
and Gray Sasser, Chairman of the Tennessee Democratic Party.

__________________________________________
Billy Fields, Chair
Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee
July 23, 2008