Previous articles have focused on access to medical service providers, especially the use of Video Remote Interpreters in the medical setting. It needs to be emphasized that Colorado law also applies to Video Remote Interpreters who are providing services to consumers in the State of Colorado, even if their work location is out of state.
There have been numerous concerns shared by individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or deafblind about VRI and the use of community interpreters who are not certified by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). In Colorado, a person cannot use the title of interpreter unless he/she is certified. The Colorado Consumer Protection Act states that a person engages in a deceptive trade practice when, in the course of such person’s business, vocation, or occupation, such person:
Claims to be a “sign language interpreter”, “interpreter for the deaf”, “deaf interpreter”, “ASL-English interpreter”, “American sign language (ASL) interpreter”, or “certified transliterator”, unless he or she holds a current certification issued by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf or a successor organization. A Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf or successor organization, membership card that shows proof of current membership and certification shall be made available for immediate inspection and review by any consumer or agent of the State of Colorado. C.R.S. § 6-1-707 (1) (e)
The Colorado Attorney General’s office has advised CCDHH that consumers do not need to specify that they are requesting an “RID” certified interpreter. Consumers only need to ask for an “interpreter”, The Colorado Consumer Protection Act applies to freelance interpreters and agencies that respond to requests for interpreters. Therefore, consumers who use VRI interpreters or community interpreters (freelance or agency) have the right to ask the interpreter to show proof of current membership and certification by RID. If the practitioner claiming to be an interpreter refuses or is unable to show proof of RID certification, the consumer (English speaker or ASL signer) has the right to report consumer fraud to the Colorado Attorney General, which has an online complaint form: https://www.stopfraudcolorado.gov/about-consumer-protection/report-fraud/consumer-complaint-form. Consumers are encouraged to complete the online complaint form because reporting fraud is a key component in identifying patterns of concern. These reports enable the Attorney General’s office to identify cases involving harm to consumers and professional interpreters. Information from consumers has the potential to contribute to potential investigations and possible legal action taken on behalf of the State of Colorado in order to eradicate deceptive business practices by non-RID certified interpreters.
In addition, the consumer may wish to file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau at https://www.bbb.org/consumer-complaints/file-a-complaint/nature-of-complaint/.
The CCDHH staff was honored to meet with Rwanda National Union of the Deaf’s Executive Director Samuel Munana, when he and his two interpreters visited the CCDHH office while they were on a three-week International Visitor Leadership Program.
The U.S. Department of State coordinated a four-city tour for a group of 11 international visitors, including Munana. Denver was the second stop of their four-city tour.
The Union and CCDHH discussed many topics, including the right to effective communication and the environment, education, technology, and training programs, Cultural experiences, and American Sign Language and Rwandan Sign Language were also compared.
Both the CCDHH staff and Union staff agreed to remain in touch and foster working relationships. Munana and his interpreters’ visit will always be treasured!
Executive Director Samuel Munana, in the middle of the group picture.
CCDHH in collaboration with Colorado’s DeafBlind Taskforce is sponsoring Colorado’s first forum for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing and blind or low vision on June 9, 2018, from 11:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M, at the Malley Senior Recreation Center, 3380 S. Lincoln Street, Englewood, Colorado. The forum will provide information on resources and new technology for improving access. The afternoon session will have a discussion about current solutions to transportation barriers. Also, this will be an opportunity for individuals to apply to be a part of the new Deafblind State Citizens Council.
Due to limited capacity, individuals who would like to participate in the forum will need to preregister. Please email your registration information to firstname.lastname@example.org
Email or mailing address:
Personal accommodation preferences (large print, interpreter, tactile interpreter, hearing assistive technology, Braille print, support service provider, or CART) for participation and access to materials:
Professional affiliation (if any):
Select your preferred sandwich (free box lunch):
___Turkey ___Ham ___Vegetarian ___White bread ___Wheat bread ___Gluten-free
The Outreach Consultant for the deafblind will be based within the CCDHH/Office of Community Access and Independence. The individual in this position will design strategy, systems, processes, guidelines, rules, and standards that are mission critical and directly impact the agency’s ongoing operation and broad program or policy. This position will be a staff authority beyond the immediate supervisor, with direct influence and impact agency-wide, including clients.
For more information or to apply, go to https://tinyurl.com/yad7yqkm.
The next quarterly Commission meeting will be held from 4:00 to 5:50 p.m. on Thursday, June 7, 2018, at the Denver Police Department at 1311 W. 46th Avenue Denver, CO 80211.
Click the link for a meeting agenda and for more information the community forum.
There will be information sharing and a discussion, regarding two potential pilot programs for coordinating and providing of auxiliary services to 1; state agencies within the Executive Branch and 2: constituents in rural areas by CCDHH during the community forum between 6:05 and 7:00 p.m.
Your participation in the discussion will assist CCDHH greatly in its implementation of the pilot programs.