Spanish speaking Americans don't need translators for USSSA services

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The United States Social Security Administration has expanded its services that are offered for Hispanic Americans.

Spanish speaking Americans can now apply for Social Security benefits and Medicare online.

Gina Gomez, the executive director of Hispanic Community Services, Inc. (HCSI) in Jonesboro said the change is necessary with the growth of the Hispanic population in the United States. "I think that this is really beneficial for our Hispanic, Spanish speaking people because a lot of the people that meet the requirements in order to apply for Medicare or retirement are older people that are not able to communicate in English."

Remigio Silvestre Domingo is a non-English speaking American who started visiting to the HCSI for help with his transition from Guatemala to the United States. "I was looking for a place to work and also a place to live," he said with Gomez translating for him. HCSI offers assistance in five areas: social, legal, educational, health and cultural.

Gomez said about 5,500 Spanish speaking Americans from six Region 8 counties frequent the center for help. "The problem that people face is the communication issue, and it's not easy, just in our city, it's not easy to go to an office where you can find bilingual staff," she said.

Domingo said he wants to return to Guatemala, but appreciates the help while he is here.

"If you help people… God will bless you."

Click here to access the Spanish version of  the Social Security and Medicare application.

Click here or call 870-931-1884 for more information about Hispanic Community Services, Inc.

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