Safety for interpreters through technology

Could the Scottish Government issue guidance for the courts, Police Scotland, NHS services and other agencies using services of interpreters. Interpreters in Scotland are self-employed and as such unrepresented so as a result no-one seems to take their safety into consideration. 1-2-1 interpretation usually requires close proximity to people who are using the service and no face mask would be possible, as this would be an obstacle in communication. Could Scottish Courts implement some technological solutions similar to those used for conference interpreting? Also, some thought should be given to arranging a safe setting when interpreting for Police Scotland, for instance, during police interviews.

Why the contribution is important

Interpreters play a very important role in accessing migrant communities and making sure that they can use different services. As interpreters are self-employed they have no way of voicing their concerns regarding the safety of their work. The requirement of close physical proximity to the people using the service means that maintaining social distance is impossible. Currently courts, police stations, etc. are completely unprepared for making sure the service is provided safely. This puts the interpreters at risk of contracting the virus (and spreading it as well).

by Interpreter on May 05, 2020 at 11:43PM

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