Department of Defense Education Activity

Sign Language Interpreting Services

The EEO Office provides Sign Language Interpreting Service (SLIS) for HQ DoDEA employees and visitors to our offices.

Requesting Interpreting Services

To request services, contact the Disability Program Manager or DMEO staff member in your local area. It is always best to request services as early as possible. Any assignment lasting over two hours usually requires an additional interpreter. As with most accommodation requests, the division, area office or district where the employee, interviewee, contractor or guest works (or will work) is ultimately financially responsible for the accommodation.

For more information contact a regional DoDEA Disability and Diversity Program Manager.

Using the Sign Language Interpreting Service

When to Use the Service:

As with all accommodation requests, an employee must ask for an interpreter to be provided as we cannot assume that an interpreter is needed. Examples of when an interpreter should be used are:

  • one-on-one meetings between employees
  • team meetings
  • office staff meetings
  • training or workshops
  • office gatherings of either a social or business nature

Making Events Accessible:

If you are planning an event open to all employees and/or the public, you must ask if anyone has special needs or accommodation requirements. All general announcements or publicity for the event, meeting or interviews should always include a notice asking for special needs of the attendees.

How to Work with an Interpreter:

Remember that the interpreter is only there to facilitate communication - not as a participant in the conversation.

  • Always look directly at the deaf person - not the interpreter.
  • Address the deaf person directly - do not preface questions with "ask her/him" or statements with "tell him/her."

Interpreters' Code of Ethics:

Interpreters are professionals who must follow a code of ethics. Interpreters shall:

  • keep all assignment-related information strictly confidential.
  • render the message faithfully, always conveying the content and spirit of the speaker.
  • not counsel, advise, or interject personal opinions.

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