Read a messange from
WFD President Colin Allen
WASLI is looking for
Check out the upcoming
WASLI’s President, Debra
becomes chair-elect of the
dedicated volunteers who
events about deaf
Russell, about recent
are willing to support our
communities, sign language
activities of WASLI in the
Alliance, in Bangkok,
organisation. You are
studies, translation and
welcome to work with us.
newsletter. no. 2
From North Korea Debra Russell visits the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and meets with sign language interpreters and deaf community organizations.
During late May, the WASLI President Debra
our visas to DPRK. The WFD Representative
world! Robert has worked over the past four
Russell, was thrilled to be part of a seven person
Officer to Pyongyang is Robert Grund from
years in the DPRK and he has accomplished
delegation that visited DPRK. She joined Colin
Germany, and he is a wonderful role model for
amazing feats! Here you can read some of what
Allen, WFD President, Terry Riley, WFD Board
how one person can positively change the
>> CONT. PAGE FIVE
Member, Cecilia Hankikoski, WDFYS President, Marco Grund, German Deaf Sports Association, and interpreter Cynthia Cave. Hend Alshowaier was also to be part of delegation, however visa problems prevented her from coming with us.
Committee of the Korean Federation for the Protection of the Disabled (KFDP) sponsored
It was a privilege to visit DPRK and to learn from the people we met. I wish the deaf and interpreter communities much continued success and I look forward to seeing what future projects will be built on the firm foundation that Robert and others have laid. Debra Russell
Presidentâ€™s words Debra Russell Dear friends and colleagues,
Skype, and in February, we were pleased to also be
Brussels in April and in May we were please to
joined by Australasia representative, Angela
attend the ACILS's 25th Anniversary in Barcelona.
Murray, who updated us on work in her region. In
Thank you to Isabelle Heyerick for so capably
2018 there are plans to hold a regional conference
representing WASLI at these events. WASLI was
in Fiji. Angela is in regular contact with people in
very excited to be part of a WFD delegation that
Australia, New Zealand and Fiji, as well as the
visited the DPRK. See the article and photos in
Solomon Islands, seeking to share information and
offer support for local and national priorities. In Since our last newsletter, several exciting WASLI events have taken place. Over the next few weeks those interpreters wishing to apply for WFD-WASLI International Sign Accreditation will be able to begin assembling their portfolios this summer, and a panel of experts
early July, our North American region met during a
face-to-face meeting per year, and we will meet in
This was a chance for representatives from
Athens in September 2016. Representatives that
Mexico, Canada, and the USA to renew goals for
are unable to attend will report in via technology.
the region, and to determine actions to be taken as
Our Vice President, Jose Ednilson, is our key
the three countries in support of interpreter
liaison to the regional representatives.
Immediately after the meetings, some of the
Dee Collins (USA) has managed the membership
WASLI board members will also participate in the
will review the applications during November. WASLI is pleased to have representatives from sign language and spoken language education, and an IS interpreter serve on the panel, along with representatives from WFD. As with any accreditation process, we were able to start with an initial group that were invited to apply as they had a long history of working WFD events and/or
renewals over the past year. Thank you, Dee, for your service! We wish Dee every success as she
the application based on feedback from the first applicants and the panellists. Watch for information about the process later the summer. Thank you to Arkady Belozvosky (USA) who has stepped up to lead the work of volunteer IS translators who will offer video translations of some of our key documents on the website. His work will complement the work coordinated by Michelle Chang (Peru), who is working with volunteer translators who will produce written translations for our website. If you are interested in a translation role, please do respond to the call for translators. Simone Scholl (Germany) has assembled a wellexperienced international team of interpreter trainers to begin moving the video education modules project along.
We thank each of the
representatives for volunteering their time and expertise to this important project. I also want to thank our Fund Development chairs, Bibi LaceyMoulder (UK) and Chris Grooms (USA) who are busy preparing a proposal for potential funding of this work. Each 6 weeks the executive meetings are held via
In June I participated in the Critical Link 8
continues to pursue her educational goals, and we
conference in Edinburgh, Scotland. While there I
welcome Rebecca Thurrowgood from Brisbane,
was also able to meet with Christian Peters, efsli
Australia, who has agreed to cover membership for
president, to review aspects of the WASLI-efsli
the remaining three years of this term.
MOU and to make plans for both boards to meet
During the past few months I have participated in
representatives of Critical Link International,
while in Greece. I was also able to meet with
working at UN high level meetings. From that initial group, WFD-WASLI has been able to refine
The WASLI Governing Document requires one
national Deaf conference in Phoenix Arizona.
several WASLI events, including an April
AIIC, and Red T. As you will know from our joint
conference at Bahrain, where WFD, WASLI and
open letter campaigns and petitions, this
ICSD were all represented at this Arab regional
international collaboration has met with success on
conference. It was a wonderful opportunity for
issues of importance for interpreters and
increased collaboration across the three
translators, whether it is to lobby for the release of
international organizations, while offering our
translators jailed in Turkey, or lobbing the US
support to the Bahraini Deaf community on issues
senate for more visas to Afghan linguists. WASLI
of importance to them. While in Manama, we met
is pleased to be part of the coalition, and we
with elected officials within Parliament, had a
appreciate the support we receive from members
chance to observe a session that is also interpreted
that tweet out our posts, share our Facebook posts,
into Bahraini Sign Language.
and sign petitions.
conference was held with over 200 attendees, and it was a pleasure to offer information about WASLI
So, as you can see, there are many people working
at that event. We also issued a three organization
hard to grow this association and to strengthen
Joint Statement in support of the Bahraini Deaf
interpreting in every WASLI region. As Board
Community, where we addressed the need for
members, we look forward to working with you
quality bilingual education, the need for sign
and hearing from you. Contact us any time with
language interpreter training in order to support the
questions and feedback, or to lend a hand.
full inclusion of deaf people in society, and for an independent sports association that can work
With warm regards.
directly with the Bahraini Sport Ministry as opposed to being under the Paralympics Committee.
Thank you to the Bahraini Deaf
Sports Association, for their warm hospitality
You can contact the president of WASLI on e-mail
during our visit.
WASLI also participated in a Justisigns event in
International Disability Alliance appoints Colin Allen as new Chair
NORTH AMERICA REGIONAL MEETING On 05 July 2016, at Phoenix, USA, the WA S L I
representative hosted a face-to-face meeting with representatives from Mexico, United States and Canada. Present at the meeting were Debbie Parliament (AVLIC), Frank Folino (CADASC), Daniel Maya Ortega (AITLS), Dawn Whitcher, Melvin Walker, (RID), David Quinto-Pozos (Mano-a-Mano), Carla Garcia-Fernandez, Rogelio Fernandez (Council de Manos) and Liz Mendoza (WASLI). On the agenda of the meeting were issues such as: support Mexico, collaborate with linguistic researchers to request government support,
partnerships with key people and the deaf
I am very concerned about the removal of barriers “ While for the Deaf Community, as Chair of IDA, I am equally
community "I am looking forward to working with all of the members from these organizations Thank you so much for attending this
keen that current obstacles experienced by all people with
meeting and for all of your insight and
disabilities are eradicated as only then will we have a truly
experience", said Liz Mendoza.
inclusive community." - Colin Allen.
On 1st. July 2016 Mr. Colin Allen assumes the
Goals. While I am very concerned about the removal
Chair of the International Disability Alliance (IDA),
of barriers for the Deaf Community, as Chair of IDA,
from Australia; elected by the Alliance’s 13 voting
I am equally keen that current obstacles experienced
Members in March of this year. Colin Allen is a
by all people with disabilities are eradicated as only
leading advocate for persons with disabilities globally, including as President of the World Federation of the Deaf since 2011. He is the second deaf person to serve as the Chair of IDA, of which the World Federation of the Deaf is a founding member. Mr. Allen succeeds Ms. Maryanne
then will we have a truly inclusive community.", says Colin Allen. Mr. Allen is responsible for guiding and
AIIC SIGN LANGUAGE NETWORK
representing IDA's engagement with the UN System
As of 8 May 2016 Maya de Wit is the new
and other international human rights and
coordinator of the AIIC Sign Language
international development organizations. Mr. Allen
Network. Maya was the first sign language
World Blind Union, and IDA Chair from July 2014
is closely engaged with the implementation of the
interpreter in the world to become a member
to June 2016.
2030 Agenda for persons with disabilities
of AIIC. The International Association of
“I am very pleased that as a deaf sign language user,
worldwide: he is leading IDA's strategic planning to
Conference Interpreters (AIIC) established in
I will be able to advance IDA goals and promote its
ensure awareness raising, capacity building, and
vision in my own language - sign language - and
participation of persons with disabilities in the
perhaps through my international leadership hasten
preparatory processes towards national reviews.
the removal of barriers experienced by other deaf
Under Mr. Allen's leadership, IDA's mission is to
people in the world, thereby pursuing and fulfilling
ensure that the UN upholds the essential, unifying
congratulates Maya and we look forward to
the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with
principle of the disability movement: 'nothing about
increased collaboration with AIIC through her
Disabilities and the Sustainable Development
us without us'.
Diamond, AO, Immediate-Past President of the
2009 a committee, the Sign Language Network, dedicated to cooperate with conference sign language interpreters. You can follow the AIIC Sign Language Network o n Tw i t t e r :
International Sign Accreditation System WFD / WASLI annouce next process
ANNUAL WASLI BOARD METTING
The WFD and WASLI have created in 2015 an
interpreters. By identifying the competencies and
regional representatives have on-line
International Sign Interpreter Accreditation
criteria, thus process will also provide a ladder
meetings to discuss and monitor our
System. Currently 20 individuals have been
approach for those who aspire to work at the
activities around the world.
awarded the official status of ‘WFD-WASLI
international events that are crucial for our
However, on 7th and 8th September,
Every month the WASLI
Accredited IS Interpreter’ after being assessed,
organisations to function effectively", said Debra
before EFSLI 2016 Conference, the
through closed applications, by a panel of six
Executive and Regional Representatives
The Certificate of Accreditation is valid for five (5)
will meet in Athens, Greece,using
"This process is an exceptional example of joint
years. If you want more information, send a e-mail
WFD-WASLI work that will result in positive
recognition of the complicated and sophisticated
N a f i s a h
R a n t a s a l m i
representatives who cannot attend efsli. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to learn more about our activities or visit our
skill sets required by International Sign
Membership Coordenator Rebecca Thurrowgood We are pleased to welcome to our new WASLI
various countries joining together and valuing the
Membership Coordinator, Rebecca Thurrowgood,
profession of sign language interpretation. Special
from Australia. Rebecca is a CODA and has
thanks to Dee Collins and Susan Emerson for
worked as an interpreter in schools and
making my introduction to this role such an easy
universities. She has also spent many years
and stress free experience. Every membership
working as a Language Assistant in a Bilingual-
means WASLI can do more to provide support,
Bicultural program for Deaf and hearing children.
training and resources for interpreters and
Currently WASLI has 15 national members, 2
According to her "Even though I’ve only been the
interpreting associations, particularly those in
organisation member and 115 individual
Membership co-ordinator for WASLI for a few
nations without this type of support. Consider
members. If you or you organization want to
weeks, it’s been great to see memberships coming
becoming a member today or sponsoring others to
support WASLI as a member you can access our
in and seeing interpreters and associations from
website on wasli.org/membership and join us.
Call for Volunteers TRANSLATOR WASLI wishes to offer news and information in multiple languages. In that way we are looking for dedicated translators who are willing to support our organization. For the written language translation department we are looking for people who can translate from English into French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Portuguese, Hindi, Russian and German. For the written translations, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org by August 1st with the following information: full name, e-mail address and your working languages (which can be others than the ones listed above) and your level of proficiency in them. INTERNATIONAL SIGN For the signed language translation department we are looking for people who can translate from English into International Sign. send an e-mail to email@example.com by August 31th with the following information: full name, e-mail address and your level of proficiency in Working from English (written) into English.
NEWSLETTER EDITOR The WASLI Board is looking for a Newsletter editor and assistants. If you are interested in this work, we would love to hear from you by May 20th. Please send a letter of interest, describing your skills and experience with creating newsletters or communiques, and three things you would like to contribute to improve the newsletter for WASLI. Send expressions of interest to: firstname.lastname@example.org
WFD and WASLI Visiting North Korea Our delegation met in Bejiing, and it was there that our visas were issued for travel the following day. Representatives of the Deaf Association and the Interpreters Association, along with a young deaf girl and her deaf teacher met us at the Sunan International Airport, and transported us to our hotel in the Munsudong area of the Embassy Village or diplomatic square. Our first day allowed us to meet senior officers of the KFPD and to experience a wonderful dance performance with Deaf youth. We then had a chance to visit the Deaf Centre, which houses the deaf kindergarten program, several offices, a studio where the deaf community are making TV programs, and a deaf woodworking studio. We also visited a vocational training centre for adults, where we saw a computer class with some deaf students, before attending a reception at the German Embassy. At the reception, a thirty-minute documentary on the work that Robert has been engaged in was previewed, and Colin Allen, WFD President, gave interviews to media representatives. The reception also allowed us to meet with other international NGO representatives and embassy staff from several countries that operate in the DPRK. In all our interactions, it is clear that Robert is very well respected for his community building and pioneering efforts with the deaf community. He has built bridges with NGOs, embassy personnel, funders and DPRK government officials, in order to garner support for the WFD project goals.
The next two days brought together deaf community representatives, along with 70 children from three different schools for the deaf (there are 8 deaf schools in total in DPRK). The program was comprised of presentations given by each of our delegation members, as well as representatives from the Deaf Association of Korea (DAK), the interpreter association (SLIAK), the Deaf Wood Workshop (DWW) and the deaf sports group. I was able to meet with several local Pyongyang sign language interpreters who have been trained as part of the project, and you will see photos of our shared conversations. Ri Choi is the president of SLIAK (Sign Language Interpreters of Korea) and I have encouraged the interpreters to apply for WASLI national membership and to be able to attend WASLI 2019 in Paris. Thanks
to Cindy Cave for also joining the meeting, and sharing her experiences that come from working many international sporting events, in addition to living and working in both Australia and Belgium.
Colin, Terry, and Cecelia were able to meet with deaf representatives at the same time that we met with the interpreters, allowing WFD, WFDYS and WASLI to learn what issues the local deaf community and interpreter communities see as the priorities moving forward. Finally, our delegation drafted a letter to King Jong Un, the supreme leader of DPRK, expressing our gratitude for the opportunity to learn about the good work occurring in the country, and offering support for national deaf community. While it is a vastlycomplex country to work in, Robert has been able to produce amazing results, not the least of which includes obtaining government permission for visits from Markku Jokinen, former WFD President, and Liz-Scott Gibson, former WASLI President, nearly six years ago, which led to exchange visits to Finland for a delegation from DPRK. Such a visit meant arranging for DPRK deaf citizens to get passports for the very first time. Over the past four years, Robert has worked with government representatives and local deaf people to: - Create the Deaf Association of Korea and the Sign Language Interpreters Association of Korea - Purchase a 18 passenger van specifically for the deaf association to use - Confirm a three story building for the deaf association and to secure funding for renovations, including ramps that allow access to the building for those who are blind and/or physical challenges - Arrange for short sign language training and interpreter training in 3 provinces - Establish a small deaf kindergarten with a deaf teachers - Create pictoral educational materials for the pre-school that showcase written Korean, Korean Sign Language, and English within the booklets - Arrange for donated woodworking equipment from deaf community representatives from Germany, to offer
training on how to manufacture flashing alarm clocks, and establishing internal and external contracts for creating wood projects. - Arrange for computer and video equipment to be donated, create a video studio, and to invite a German filmmaker to come and train local deaf people in creating and editing videos - Produce 14 short TV programs with Deaf narrators on a variety of issues - Ensure a sign language interpreter has been present during large government events such as the Day of the Disabled - Bring a DPRK delegation to the WFD Congress at Istanbul, Turkey in July 2015, and to offer a presentation at the conference - Arrange for our delegation to visit as the country prepares its final reports about the project work that has been accomplished
Robert's energy, commitment to making the world a better place for deaf people, and his willingness to make personal sacrifices to live in an environment where he often has limited communication with his family and friends outside of the country, is an outstanding model for all who are interested in supporting community development in emerging countries like DPRK. Robert's leadership abilities and diplomacy have served the deaf community well, and his actions can serve as a roadmap for future projects in other countries. It was a privilege to visit DPRK and to learn from the people we met. I wish the deaf and interpreter communities much continued success and I look forward to seeing what future projects will be built on the firm foundation that Robert and others have laid. And to WFD, I want to sincerely thank Colin for his leadership and spirit of collaboration that allows us to continue to work so closely together. It was an amazing week of experie nces that will remain in my heart forever. In gratitude.
WASLI at ACILS the 25th Anniversary
Critical Link 8 Conference at HeriotWatt University in Scotland During June 27-July 01, both signed and spoken language interpreters gathered in Edinburgh, Scotland for the Critical Link conference. Critical Link is one of the international organizations that WASLI collaborates with on our Open Letter Campaigns. Several of our WASLI members also attended the conference, as delegates and presenters. Over 300 participants came from many different countries, to share their research and practices about community interpreting. The conference had both BSL and International Sign interpretation, and the final conference panel was live streamed, allowing interpreters from around the globe to participate by sending in questions for the panelists.
ACILS president (Albert Llaurens), vice-president (Sara Costa) and WASLI secretary (Isabelle Heyerick) at the 25th anniversary awareness session, Barcelona.
On June 4 th the Association of Catalonian Signed Language interpreters celebrated their 25 th anniversary. WASLI was invited to their awareness session. The WASLI secretary, Isabelle Heyerick, gave a presentation introducing WASLI. During her time at the ACILS conference she had the opportunity to meet with wonderful and passionate people. A lot of things are changing in Cataluña regarding the formation of signed language interpreters with the establishment of a university degree training. However, the basic working conditions still need attention and improvement. WASLI heartily congratulates ACILS on their 25 th anniversary and looks forward to collaborate in the future.
SHORT NEWS Europe: Christopher Stone has been playing an active role in supporting the efsli board, and the next efsli conference will be held in Athens in Sept 2016. EFSLI has an exciting program planned for its delegates and several WASLI executive will be attending as presenters and delegates. We look forward to continued collaboration with the new board of efsli.
Some of the people you may know presented, including Christopher Stone, Campbell McDermid, Della Goswell, Robin Dean, Risa Shaw, Jemina Napier, Debra Russell, Rachel Locker McKee, Robert Lee, Betsy Winston, Terry Janzen, Barb Shaffer, Lorraine Leeson, Myriam Vermeerbergen, Beppie van den Bogaerde, Bonnie Heath, Ineke Crezee, Christian Rathmann, Jeff Davies, and so many others. So you can see this is a conference where sign language interpreters are actively involved. WASLI asked Dr. George Major from New Zealand to share her thoughts about the conference. Here is what she said: "Earlier this month I attended the Critical Link 8 conference in Edinburgh. I have always heard good things about this conference but had not yet had a chance to attend myself. Luckily I was accepted to present a paper on my research, so I was able to attend as part of my work. Critical Link 8 was hosted by Heriot-Watt University, and organised extremely well by the friendly and helpful conference committee. I can honestly say this is one of the best conferences I’ve been to (apart from WASLI, of course)! CL8 was a really well balanced mix of spoken and signed language researchers, educators, and practitioners. Most of the research presented was broad enough to be relevant to both fields. This meant it never felt like spoken and signed people were separate groups – everyone was sharing and learning together. Cl8 offered a huge amount of exciting new research from all around the world. Presenters included many leading researchers in the field, as well as newer researchers and doctoral students presenting their studies. Some of my favourite presentations (among many!) included Rachel Mapson’s research on interpreters’ perceptions of politeness, Kirri Dangerfield’s research on signed language team interpreting, and Robert Lee and Peter Llewellyn-Jones’ presentation on using role-space theory in interpreter education. There were a lot of parallel sessions – at times up to 10. The only thing I’d wished could be different was less parallel sessions, because it was very hard to choose what to attend"!
Asia: The next regional conference and meetings of Asia interpreters will be held in Singapore in October 2016. Plans are coming together for an exciting two day conference and we thank Etsuko Unemoto for her continued service in this region. Austraoceania: plans underway for a joint interpreter-deaf australia conference in Sydney Australia for Oct 2016. Balkans: Thanks to the members from around the globe who sponsored 8 interpreters to join WASLI as individual members. Desanka Zizik is now working on a draw to determine who those lucky recipients will be! Latin America: Isabel Rey is supporting Colombia SLI Meeting and Latin American SLI Meeting in 2017 as you can read on next page. Transcausia: Anna Komarova has been busy offering some training for interpreters outside of Moscow. This is a challenging geographical region given its size and the political context, but our reps are working hard to support SL interpreters in the region.
WASLI President with Angela Sasso, President Critical Link, Linda Fitchett, Past President AIIC, and Maya Hess, President Red T
This meant it never felt like spoken and signed people were separate groups – everyone was sharing and learning together. George Major
EVENTS ASIA 5th WFD Asia Conference 2016 Singapore 14 - 16 October Website: http://wfdasia2016.sg COLOMBIA 1st National Sign Language Interpreters Meeting Pereira 6 - 8 October Website: http://www.aniscol.org
BRAZIL 5th National Congress about Sign Language Translation and Interpreting Research Florianópolis 30 nov - 02 dez Website: http://www.congressotils.com.br GREECE EFSLI 2016 Conference Athens 09 - 11 September Website: http://efsli.org/2016
Brisbane 3 – 5 August 2017 Call for papers is open. Website: http://www.fit2017.org PANAMÁ 3rd WASLI Latin American Sign Language Interpreters and Deaf-blind Guide Meeting Panamá City 17 - 21 July 2017 E-mail: email@example.com
BELGIUM ENSLT - European Network Sign Language Teachers Symposium Antwerp 18 - 20 November Website: http://enslt.eu/pages/news.html MALASYA 2nd International Conference of Deaf Muslims 2016 Kuala Lumpur 27 - 30 November Website: malaysia2016.globaldeafmuslim.org AUSTRALIA XXI FIT - International Federation of Translators World Congress
The views expressed in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect those of the World Association of Sign Language Interpreters. The Editor, together with the WASLI Executive Board and external contributors, produce the WASLI newsletter. WASLI will work to ensure the authenticity of any information provided. We reserve the right to edit all submissions that are published. WASLI accepts no liability for the accuracy of the contents or any opinions expressed. Readers are invited to reproduce information provided the source is quoted. Readers should contact firstname.lastname@example.org for permission to use WASLI official photographs, or to advise of a change of email address.
WASLI EXECUTIVE BOARD Officers: Deb Russell (President); José Ednilson Souza Junior (Vice President); Isabelle Heyerick (Secretary); Susan Emerson (Treasurer) Regional Representatives: Angela Murray(Australasia & Oceania); Natasha Maliko (Africa); Monica Punjabi and Etsuko Umemoto (Asia); Desanka Zizic (Balkans); Isabel Rey (Latin America and Caribbean); Liz Mendoza (North America); Igor Bondarenko & Anna Komarova (Transcaucasia & Central Asia); (Europe); Christopher Stone.
WASLI VOLUNTEERS Deaf Interpreter Advisor: Nigel Howard WASLI Membership Coordinator: Rebecca Thurrowgood Social Media Coordinator: Suzanne Ehrlich WASLI Translations Coordinators: Michelle Chang (written translations), Arkady Belozovsky (signed translations) Web: Patrick Wiche & Patrick Galasso Newsletter Editor: Open Fund Development Committee: Chris Grooms & Bibi Dalacey-Mould Educational Video Modules: Simone Scholl
CONTACT US WASLI Office 7/211 Wellington Street Collingwood Victoria 3066 Australia
w w w. w a s l i . o rg