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At the 2018 NAD Council of Representatives, various proposed priorities were discussed and five of them were selected as the priorities for NAD Board and Headquarters to focus on for 2018-2020; in this video NAD President Melissa gives a report about the priority regarding the Sign Language Interpreting profession.

VIDEO DESC & TRANSCRIPT: NAD President Melissa Draganac-Hawk is standing in front of a dark teal wall. The NAD logo appears on bottom right corner as a watermark.

MELISSA: At the 2018 NAD Council of Representatives, various proposed priorities were discussed and five of them were selected as the priorities for NAD Board and Headquarters to focus on for 2018-2020. In this video, I will talk about the priority regarding Interpreting. This priority has three parts. The first part is the NAD-RID Code of Professional Conduct, which needs to be updated to reflect the needs of deaf people today. Progress is being made in this area. The second part of this priority is to develop a position statement on the minimum standards of interpreting. The third part is to look at sign language interpreting certification programs. While RID is responsible for NIC, SC:L and CDI certifications, the NAD has no control over those certification programs managed by RID. However, it does not mean we are limited to those certification programs. The NAD is looking into alternative options. At the conference, there was a motion to establish AASLI – American Association of Sign Language Interpreters, however it was referred to the Ad Hoc Committee on Interpreting. The delegates also requested for a report from the Ad Hoc Committee on Interpreting on the status of this motion. Both, the Priority and the referred motion were delivered to the Ad Hoc committee for their review. In the fall of 2018, the Ad Hoc committee met with the NAD Board and made some recommendations. Upon making the recommendations to the Board, the Ad Hoc committee’s work has been completed. We appreciate their hard work and commitment to this issue. The NAD Board is taking the recommendations under serious consideration, because we value the deaf community as well as the interpreting community. We are looking into this to ensure we honor the needs of the deaf community and interpreters. We urge all interpreters to join us in looking how interpreter credentialing aligns with the NAD mission statement; to preserve, promote, and protect our civil, human, and linguistic rights. The NAD Board has decided to continue to study the options we have been presented with, while considering various factors that have a fiscal impact. Factors include but are not limited to; the cost of developing one test may cost approximately $500,000 to $1 Million. The life cycle of a test and ensuring we can develop a new test in 10-12 years. Addition of staff, resulting in the need of expanding our office. Ensuring there is a grievance process in place and available funds to support it. Lastly, working with states to ensure their Interpreter Licensure or related legislation recognizes the NAD certification. The NAD Board is committed to continuing this feasibility study and will share an updated report at the upcoming National Leadership Training Conference in the fall of 2019. Interpreting is an important concern for the NAD Board, while we are looking into this, we are looking into other approaches as well. Over the past few years, the NAD has had a committee focused on developing an Interpreter Referral Agency Accreditation program. The committee has been committed to developing guidelines for standards and best practices for Interpreting Agencies. Upon completion of this work by the committee, the NAD hopes to launch this program for interpreter agencies to adhere as a guide. We hope that you, as our community continue to support the NAD Board’s progress in addressing this issue. We are focused on this task, while making deaf people’s rights a top priority and ensuring qualified interpreters. Thank you.

Video cuts to grey background with the NAD logo quickly changing in different bright colors from teal to white to black to hot pink to green to orange to teal to yellow to purple to finally the official NAD logo with copyright text underneath “The National Association of the Deaf (c) 2019 All Rights Reserved”.

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