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Language Barrier

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NEWS
By DAN DEARTH | April 11, 2010
SMITHSBURG -- Smithsburg Middle School student Joanne Lee couldn't speak English when she started kindergarten. But things have changed since then. On June 2, Joanne will take the stage with 274 other students from across the United States to represent Washington County Public Schools at the 2010 Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. The event will last until June 4. "The nerves are the worst," Joanne said. "I have to remember not to spell too fast so I don't miss a letter.
NEWS
by ERIN CUNNINGHAM | October 14, 2006
HAGERSTOWN - A health scare in downtown Hagerstown on Wednesday grew out of a language barrier. A Hagerstown Police officer thought that African refugees living in a West Franklin Street apartment building were sick. Fearing a dangerous illness, officials quarantined the building and set up decontamination tents. The refugees didn't speak English and couldn't tell the officer that they were OK. Reviewing the incident on Thursday, Hagerstown Fire Department Chief Gary Hawbaker said emergency personnel are not told where refugees are living in the city or whether they can communicate with first responders.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | January 3, 2009
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- Cambodian, Hindi, Russian and Mandarin are just a few of a growing number of foreign languages now being heard in the hallways of Berkeley County's public schools. Berkeley County Schools Superintendent Manny P. Arvon said last week that a total of 26 languages are spoken at Martinsburg High School. "It is a challenge," Arvon said of teaching students English as a second language with limited federal money and no state funding. "Everybody's doing the best they can with what they have available.
NEWS
October 13, 2006
Anyone caught in Wednesday's massive traffic jam in downtown Hagerstown was probably tempted to say "doggone it" or worse as they inched through the center city's streets. The jam was caused when police and emergency officials responded to a report of a flu-like illness among African refugees living in an apartment building at 25 1/2 W. Franklin St., across from the main post office Thirteen of the refugees and three of the other residents were evacuated and evaluated in two decontamination tents.
NEWS
September 26, 2005
INWOOD, W.Va. - Four people were stabbed and another was hit, possibly with a baseball bat, during a disturbance at Lobo's nightclub in Inwood early Saturday, according to the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department. Deputies were notified about 1:44 a.m. of a fight at the club with people being stabbed, a news release from the sheriff's department said. The bar is off Pilgrim Street near the Food Lion supermarket, police said. Deputy T.E. Boyles arrived at the bar and found three people with stab wounds, the release said.
NEWS
June 30, 1997
By LISA GRAYBEAL Staff Writer, Chambersburg CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Antonio Velasquez moved his family from Mexico to Chambersburg eight years ago, joining his brother's family, who had settled here two years before in search of opportunities and a better life. He's since made a living as the owner of Mexican Video on South Main Street, a small video store and grocery where he rents mostly Spanish-language movies and sells a variety of food imported from his native country.
NEWS
April 14, 1997
By BRENDAN KIRBY Staff Writer A Boonsboro church that is sponsoring a refugee family from Vietnam is putting the finishing touches on preparations for their arrival and has found an interpreter, said the man who is heading up the church's project. Bruce Smith said the family is scheduled to land at Baltimore-Washington International Airport April 28. When the five do, they will have a fully furnished three-bedroom apartment next to Mt. Nebo United Methodist Church on South Main Street to move into, he said.
NEWS
By JENNIFER FITCH | July 5, 2009
Editor's note: This is the second in a two-part series about the growing Hispanic population in Franklin County, Pa. The first part appeared Sunday. CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- Picture cards. Telephone systems. Volunteer translators. Agencies in Franklin County, Pa., encountering a language barrier on the job employ some common tools to communicate with people in need. Officials say they find the most spoken language other than English is Spanish. The Franklin County 911 center receives about three or four calls a week from people speaking Spanish, Assistant Communications Coordinator Ben Rice said.
NEWS
October 23, 1997
By LISA GRAYBEAL Staff Writer, Chambersburg CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - With Chambersburg's growing Hispanic population, local business and agency employees are attempting to break through the language barrier by learning to speak Spanish. Ten people are learning to speak basic Spanish in a free course held every Thursday morning at the Coyle Free Library in Chambersburg. Funded by a multicultural grant, a second 12-week course, which is starting to fill up, will be offered to the community in February.
NEWS
by ERIN CUNNINGHAM | October 12, 2006
HAGERSTOWN - What appeared to be the makings of a dangerous outbreak in downtown Hagerstown ended with two people taken to the hospital with an unknown illness, and officials unable to say why the situation escalated so quickly. Thirteen African refugees and three other residents were evacuated from 25 1/2 W. Franklin St. wearing green masks and latex gloves Wednesday afternoon. Officials said they were rumored to be suffering from an unknown illness, but that ultimately they believed it was a false alarm.
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NEWS
By DAN DEARTH | April 11, 2010
SMITHSBURG -- Smithsburg Middle School student Joanne Lee couldn't speak English when she started kindergarten. But things have changed since then. On June 2, Joanne will take the stage with 274 other students from across the United States to represent Washington County Public Schools at the 2010 Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. The event will last until June 4. "The nerves are the worst," Joanne said. "I have to remember not to spell too fast so I don't miss a letter.
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NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | November 18, 2009
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- A bench trial for a well-known former Martinsburg defense attorney accused of practicing law without a license came to a screeching halt Wednesday after one of the state's witnesses apparently did not understand enough English to be sworn in to testify. The trial for Steven M. Askin is expected to resume at 9 a.m. today, but it is unclear whether an interpreter for Toan Huynh of Hagerstown will be available. Huynh is Vietnamese. Askin, 61, was indicted by a Berkeley County grand jury in February 2009 on 11 misdemeanor counts of practice without a law license.
NEWS
By BRIGITTE GREWE / Pulse correspondent | September 8, 2009
"Guten tag, wie gehts dir?" or "Hello, how are you?" was what first came into my mind (with the little German I did know) on what to say to my cousin from the village of Glessen near KÃ ln, Germany. My family and I had just returned from a month-long trip to Thailand and were being picked up by my sister and cousin at Dulles Washington Airport. I first met my cousin, Kristin Grewe, shyly standing by the car and waiting for us to load our luggage into the car. I didn't know how much English she actually knew or what kind of person she was. I was relieved to find out she did know a lot of English, because I didn't have to tackle the language barrier.
NEWS
By JENNIFER FITCH | July 5, 2009
Editor's note: This is the second in a two-part series about the growing Hispanic population in Franklin County, Pa. The first part appeared Sunday. CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- Picture cards. Telephone systems. Volunteer translators. Agencies in Franklin County, Pa., encountering a language barrier on the job employ some common tools to communicate with people in need. Officials say they find the most spoken language other than English is Spanish. The Franklin County 911 center receives about three or four calls a week from people speaking Spanish, Assistant Communications Coordinator Ben Rice said.
NEWS
By JENNIFER FITCH | July 4, 2009
Editor's note: This is the first story in a two-part series about the growing Hispanic population in Franklin County, Pa. In part two, read about how agencies in Franklin County are toppling language barriers. WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- William Gonzalez doesn't sound like other officers in the Waynesboro Police Department when he speaks. His family moved from the Dominican Republic when he was 3 years old and raised him in New York City. He lives in Chambersburg, Pa., and works part time for the Waynesboro and Gettysburg, Pa., police departments.
NEWS
By ANDREW GAY / Special to The Herald-Mail | March 2, 2009
Pat Henson of Waynesboro, Pa., spends his days working for the main post office in Frederick, Md. But his passion is music. Henson, 39, plays drums, teaches drum students and performs with local rock band TwoFace. But a year ago, Henson thought he wouldn't be able to do any of that again. He was diagnosed with Miller-Fisher syndrome. Miller-Fisher involves a temporary, partial paralysis of the body, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | January 3, 2009
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- Cambodian, Hindi, Russian and Mandarin are just a few of a growing number of foreign languages now being heard in the hallways of Berkeley County's public schools. Berkeley County Schools Superintendent Manny P. Arvon said last week that a total of 26 languages are spoken at Martinsburg High School. "It is a challenge," Arvon said of teaching students English as a second language with limited federal money and no state funding. "Everybody's doing the best they can with what they have available.
NEWS
by ERIN CUNNINGHAM | October 14, 2006
HAGERSTOWN - A health scare in downtown Hagerstown on Wednesday grew out of a language barrier. A Hagerstown Police officer thought that African refugees living in a West Franklin Street apartment building were sick. Fearing a dangerous illness, officials quarantined the building and set up decontamination tents. The refugees didn't speak English and couldn't tell the officer that they were OK. Reviewing the incident on Thursday, Hagerstown Fire Department Chief Gary Hawbaker said emergency personnel are not told where refugees are living in the city or whether they can communicate with first responders.
NEWS
October 13, 2006
Anyone caught in Wednesday's massive traffic jam in downtown Hagerstown was probably tempted to say "doggone it" or worse as they inched through the center city's streets. The jam was caused when police and emergency officials responded to a report of a flu-like illness among African refugees living in an apartment building at 25 1/2 W. Franklin St., across from the main post office Thirteen of the refugees and three of the other residents were evacuated and evaluated in two decontamination tents.
NEWS
by ERIN CUNNINGHAM | October 12, 2006
HAGERSTOWN - What appeared to be the makings of a dangerous outbreak in downtown Hagerstown ended with two people taken to the hospital with an unknown illness, and officials unable to say why the situation escalated so quickly. Thirteen African refugees and three other residents were evacuated from 25 1/2 W. Franklin St. wearing green masks and latex gloves Wednesday afternoon. Officials said they were rumored to be suffering from an unknown illness, but that ultimately they believed it was a false alarm.
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