Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Communicating with Hispanic Workers; Contractor's edition

I've seen a lot of language books, and I think this one is terrific. The price was right too. I found it for $1.00 at the Discovery Shop (benefits cancer research) on Kenney Rd. in Columbus. And there are several more copies there, if you think you might need one. The author, Trish Rodriguez, has a B.A. in Spanish and International Studies and an M.A. in International Training and Education and is married to a contractor. There are also other titles for dry wall, masonry, landscaping, etc. The format is an easy to use, flip chart style, that would fit easily into a pair of coveralls or jeans.

One of the key chapters, which I might have put at the beginning, includes interview questions, paperwork phrases, such as Complete esta solicitud and Necesito ver su identificacion. In the introduction Ms. Rodriguez includes a few tips on basic communication such as, be polite, and remember, not everyone is from Mexico. She also points out that many of the Spanish speakers may not know the Spanish words in the construction trades.

When I checked this book title at the various book selling sites I was a bit surprised to see speakers of English referred to as "Anglo-Saxons." Didn't they die off about 1,000 years ago? Millions of Americans have no direct descent from the British Isles or England--English is our language, not our ethnicity.

The parent company of Cool Springs Press is Thomas Nelson, a Christian publisher. In her acknowledgments Ms. Rodriguez thanks God and gives him the glory. Nice touch in a well written language guide. I hope there are similar books for nurses, hospitality managers, and city workers.

Communicating with Hispanic workers; contractor's edition. Trish Rodriguez, Cool Springs Press, 2005, 160 p. ISBN 1-59186-232-9. Spiral bound. PB.