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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.
Interpreter Licensure Task Force
It was the directive of the Florida legislature that the Florida Coordinating Council for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (FCCDHH) submit a report by January 1, 2006, of its findings and recommendations regarding standards for licensure of interpreters.
In response to the directives within s. 413.271, Florida Statutes, the council created a task force, which has prepared such a report which includes:
- A review of other state interpreter licensures to determine the needs and criteria related to qualifications and standards as they relate to services for deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened, and deaf-blind individuals.
- Recommendations of licensure types, rules and regulations that establish requirements for compliance of interpreting professionals, including, but not limited to, communication accessibility standards in the provision of services to deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened and deaf-blind individuals.
Major findings and recommendations in this report are derived from several sources, including a March 2003 staff analysis by the Florida Department of Children and Families, the 2004 report by the Governor's Working Group on the Americans with Disabilities Act, public hearings, independent research by the FCCDHH, a survey conducted by the Florida Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (FRID), and a comparison of FCAT results.
The following report provides background and outlines the four recommendations regarding licensure of interpreters in the State of Florida compiled from reports and studies including:
- Creation of an interpreter licensure board.
- Establishment of criteria for licensure.
- Establishment of administrative procedures.
- Feasibility issue; lack of qualified interpreters; solution?--Consideration of a mentorship/apprenticeship program.
The Florida Coordinating Council for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is appreciative of the opportunity to write this report that details an action plan for addressing issues of concern relating to licensure of interpreters. Follow-up discussions need to occur on recommendations requiring legislation, policy, and funding sources identified in the reports mentioned. The FCCDHH can provide guidance on these matters.