CISLI recently held two separate meetings as part of the yearly Dublin General Meeting with the specific purpose of examining the draft CISLI Strategy 2019-2022 document prepared by the Policy and Strategy Committee.

The GMs were poorly attended. Each had just two non-Committee interpreters show up. Nevertheless each time we took the opportunity to have a discussion around the Strategy and possible additions / amendments. These are some of the additional points that came up from the meetings.

Complaints Procedures: There is a need to push strongly for effective and clear:complaints procedures and to lay down the process a Deaf person (or interpreter) needs to follow when they have a grievance. The information collated by the CISLI Grievance Procedure Research sub-committee needs to be collated and followed up on. Complaints need to be anonymised by someone handling the complaints at first so that they can thereafter be handled impartially by any complaint handling body. It also needs to be established what the hierarchy of complaints is, i.e. does a complaint first attempt to be solved locally with an agency, then with CISLI / SLIS Register if response is unsatisfactory? At the moment we need to do some advocating – we cannot implement a complaints process yet but we can certainly take details of a particular situation and write a response to it.

Involvement in Deaf Community: Many interpreters simply do not get involved in the Deaf community sufficiently. Mixing with the Deaf community is essential for standards maintenance and keeping abreast of changes in ISL. A discussion was had about the changing profile of CDS students in terms of their background (now younger, less likely to have any contact with Deaf people / ISL, perhaps more likely to lose interest). CISLI should make a commitment to explore ways with SLIS, CDS and IDS to increase the presence and profile of interpreters in the Deaf community, in all its manifestations, as an essential component of skills and quality – a campaign possibly named “SHOW YOUR FACE!” – CPD credits could be earned for attending Deaf social / community event. Also, we could do ‘interpreter of the week’ type videos – every week new interpreter video distributed thru social media. Video – Name, where from, where they work, when qualified, if CODA, 1 interesting thing etc. Could be linked to member list on our website so Deaf people can see who we are.

Revalidation: a need for us to explore ways in which to regularly assess interpreters who have been out of training for a long time. No guarantee that interpreters will have the same skill levels 5 or 10 years after qualifying. Need to explore this as Deaf community have been calling for this for a long time. Attendance at CPD is great but very rarely any assessment component.

To see a copy of the Draft CISLI Strategy as of June 2018, click here.