Working with a BSL interpreter
A British Sign Language/English interpreter works with Deaf people whose first and preferred language is sign language (BSL). Sign language is used by approximately 50,000-70,000 people in the UK (Source RNID Oct 2020) An interpreter can be booked either directly or through an agency, however the latter will incur a booking fee.
Before the assignment:
- Contact me to discuss the assignment requirements and check availability.
- Decide on remote or face to face support.
- Provide as much information about the event as possible e.g. type of assignment, time, date, venue/remote platform, how many Deaf people attending etc.
- Agree fee.
- Send any preparation material well in advance e.g. agendas, speeches, power points. Note: all information is confidential.
- If the assignment is expected to last more than 2 hours, a co-worker may be necessary.
During the assignment:
- I will arrive early to ensure the venue is set up appropriately for both Deaf and hearing clients, and to consider positioning, lighting, seating and background noises etc.
- My role is to aid communication. I aim to accurately interpret everything that is said/signed, reflecting the mood and tone.
- There may be a short time delay during the interpreting and/or voice over process.
- I remain impartial and do not take part in group activities or offer personal advice.
- It is good practice to ensure one person speaks at a time.
- It would be culturally appropriate to ensure all videos are subtitled for equal access.
- Speak directly to the Deaf client. Avoid saying “Ask him/her…” When voicing over for a Deaf client, I usually speak in the first person.
- I require regular breaks to prevent fatigue and to ensure the Deaf client has an eye break.
After the assignment:
- I will invoice within 1 week.
- Payment should be made within 30 days. After 30 days, charges may be applied as per Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998.
- Discounts sometimes available for block bookings.
Any concerns or complaints should be raised with me as soon as possible.
As an NRCPD registered interpreter I abide by NRCPD code of conduct.
Please note cancellation charges:
15 days or more notice – No fee.
8-14 days notice – 50% of the fee.
7 days or less notice – Full fee.
Once a booking has been agreed and confirmed, a contractural agreement is considered to have been formed. See Terms and Conditions for further details.