Michelle’s Story: Using Interpreters

Sep 16, 2019

Video Description: https://tinyurl.com/y6fbbnt6

In a light-filled lounge room, a middle-aged woman sits. She has dark hair and olive skin and wears black-rimmed glasses and a turquoise blouse. Next to her, white text reads, “Michelle’s story working with interpreters”
Michelle signs.
I think it is important to meet and take some time out to learn about each individual person‘s needs because the deaf community is a wide spectrum of people with needs that are different. One can’t assume that everyone will require the same accommodations. I appreciate it when an interpreter comes to me and asks what communication mode I require. They will ask if I prefer lipreading or not. They ask me where I prefer them to sit, where I am most comfortable, whether they should sit or stand. That’s a very positive thing I’ve noticed.
Some interpreters, however, may cross boundaries. If during a lecture, a presenter asks a question, the interpreter might answer for the deaf person. That’s not appropriate. The spotlight should always be directed to the deaf person instead of the interpreter taking over that role and crossing boundaries.
We now have a growing trend in New York City, expanding our use of CDIs. We use a lot more Certified Deaf Interpreters with our clientele. It’s very helpful. We have some people from other countries and the skills a CDI bring are invaluable in terms of communicating. As a deaf person, I find myself personally benefiting from using a CDI even though the CDI isn’t there for me. They allow me to understand clearly when an interpreter isn’t really interpreting very well.
NDC Logo appears above text, black lettering on a white background: nationaldeafcenter.org
“This video was developed under a jointly-funded grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) #HD326D160001. However, the contents do not necessarily represent the positions or policies of the federal government.”
Next to it, three logos appear. The first reads “IDEAs that Work” with an arrow drawing a circle from “IDEAs” to “Work” and the words “U.S. Office of Special Education Programs”. The second logo shows a red-and-blue star with text next to it that reads “TA&D”. The third logo shows a blue circle around a tree. In the blue circle are the words “U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.”

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© National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes
Video licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 4.0 International

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Topic(s): Deaf 101
Type of Resource: Videos

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