g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

Bored? Games!
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

Natural Living
Folklore and Mythology
Distance Learning

All times in EST

Clairvoyance: 08:00 PM

Full Schedule
g Deafness Site

BellaOnline's Deafness Editor


Sign Language Interpreters

Recently, on newscasts and other television programs I have noticed sign language interpreters translating the words for a deaf audience. Most often these are broadcasts from the USA but it is on the increase in Australia. The first time I remember seeing it recently was when, Anna Bligh, then State Premier of Queensland (Australia), had sign language interpreters with her when she did news conferences monitoring the Queensland floods in 2010. ABC 24 uses interpreters for programs such as Big Ideas and not too long ago I saw one on a comedy program. (Now that must be hard to interpret!)

I wondered who becomes an interpreter and why!

Years ago, once I became deaf I went to TAFE (Australian Adult Education) to learn sign language Auslan (Australian Sign Language). In my class were a number of people who were studying so they could work either as an interpreter or to help them with their normal line of work. One chap worked with the Blind Institute. He often came across people who were deaf as well as those who were blind so with an understanding of sign language he was better able to do his job. Another lady worked in the disability sector and yet another was at a school which had deaf students. These people felt a knowledge of sign language would help them communicate but it also meant they could act as an interpreter when the situation called for it.

Another of my class mates had a son who had an inoperable brain tumour which was causing him to go slowly going deaf. She wanted to make sure he had the best chance in life and sought to learn sign language primarily as a way of tutoring and communicating with him. However, she became so good at it, she went on to become a registered interpreter and I have seen her at work on some of the television programs in Australia.

About 40years ago a lady in the US watched a young disabled boy struggle on crutches and decided (as an 18 year old) that she wanted to get into the area of disabilities. As she began her working career, she was appalled at the number of deaf children who had no method of communication and set out to learn sign language. She tells of a young woman who when she needed food would throw chairs around the room and believed her frustration was because of her inability to communicate. After tutoring, this young woman learned signs to express her need for food and the chair throwing stopped. This lady became passionate about sign language and became an interpreter. She was one of the first interpreters working with high profile politicians such as Hilary Clinton and entertainers like Willie Nelson and Kenny Rogers.

Interpreters help the hearing world understand the Deaf, not only because they bridge the communication gap, but also because they help break down the cultural barriers.
Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Twitter Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Facebook Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to MySpace Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Digg Sign+Language+Interpreters Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Yahoo My Web Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Google Bookmarks Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Stumbleupon Add Sign+Language+Interpreters to Reddit

History of Auslan - Australian Sign Language
Why isn't there a universal sign language?
Communicating with Deaf people
Related Articles
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map

For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Deafness Newsletter

Past Issues

Printer Friendly
tell friend
Tell a Friend
Email Editor

Content copyright © 2018 by Felicity Bleckly. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Felicity Bleckly. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Felicity Bleckly for details.


g features
Tips for music with a Cochlear Implant

Are Cochlear Implants for adults?

Learning to be hear bilaterally

Archives | Site Map


Past Issues

Note: BellaOnline uses cookies to help provide a consistent user experience. Our advertisers may use cookies to help customize ads. Please contact us with any question about our cookie use.

Summertime Foods
Corn on the Cob
Burgers on the Grill
Apple Pie


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2018 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.

BellaOnline Editor