Why use a Deaf Interpreter?
Often, a Deaf/hearing interpreter team can communicate more effectively than a hearing interpreter alone. The benefits are as follows:
- Optimal understanding by all parties
- Efficient use of time and resources
- Clarification of linguistic and/or cultural information to reduce misunderstanding(s)
Who Benefits From Using a Deaf Interpreter?
A Deaf interpreter is highly recommended in situations where misunderstandings can result in especially serious outcomes. Deaf interpreter services should be used in the courts, where a person could be wrongly convicted, by the police when interviewing victims, witnesses or suspects who are Deaf, or in mental health settings where clear and accurate communication assists professionals in determining correct medication or other interventions. Children’s Aid Society workers may need to use the services of a Deaf interpreter to ensure children are thoroughly protected. The following groups are especially needful of this service:
- Deaf immigrants
- Deaf persons who have been socially isolated (ie. From rural areas, inmates of mental facilities or prisons)
- Deaf Plus (mentally ill, developmentally delayed, educationally deprived)
- A Deaf person who is not comfortable with hearing people
- A Deaf person who is seriously ill, injured or dying (the Deaf person’s ability to produce signs clearly or use both arms when signing may be affected)
- Deaf children who have not been exposed or who may have had limited exposure to English and/or ASL