Updated language services policy

15 February 2024
An updated Interim Language Services policy and How to Work with Interpreters and Translators guide has been published by the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing.

The policy and guide replace the former Department of Health and Human Services documents to support the departments and their funded services to respond to the needs of linguistically diverse people, including migrants, refugees and people seeking asylum, and those who use a sign language.

Victoria is one of the most culturally diverse and fastest growing populations in Australia, with more than a quarter of the population born overseas. Of those born overseas, three-quarters come from non-English speaking countries. Victorians come from more than 300 ancestries, follow almost 200 different faiths, and over a quarter of the community speak a language other than English at home.

The Language services policy and guidelines identify when language services should be offered to clients based on legislative requirements and best practice service delivery. Carers of clients, where appropriate, may also require the language services.

Department-funded organisations and services are encouraged to develop local language services policies and procedures consistent with this policy and guidelines. 

Further information