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Vital Signs: ASL Interpreters Are A Connection to the Deaf Community That Should Not Be Compromised

Posted by Jorge Ungo on September 22, 2017

It is International Week of the Deaf, a time to raise global awareness about the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing communities.

This is as good a time as any to say the following: If your organization interacts in any way with the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, and you are relying upon gestures or lip reading to communicate with them, then you are not meeting the needs of a community that is 48 million strong. It’s that simple.

All organizations that interact with the public should be aware of these communities and be prepared to communicate effectively. Here are a few important facts you should know:

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‘Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt’ Should Be a Red Flag for Local Governments When It Comes to Sign-Language Interpreting

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 21, 2017

If you’ve been on social media lately, you’re likely familiar with the “Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt,” who by now is as omnipresent on Twitter as “The Man in the Yellow Hat” is in children’s books.

The differences between the two could not be starker. Whereas the latter is a rational-minded fictional character that chased after Curious George and cleaned up after his mayhem, the former is no laughing matter, as he could have inadvertently caused real-life mayhem of his own despite his best efforts to be helpful.

The Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt has endured a great deal of ridicule, but the responsibility for using a qualified interpreter truly lies with the public entity whose constituency relies upon it to build language access into its overall communication strategy.

Here is what happened:

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Evaluating Video Remote Interpreting Providers: 5 Factors To Consider

Posted by Scott Brown on August 24, 2017

More companies are recognizing the power of video remote interpreting (VRI) as a way to connect with people face-to-face. It’s especially useful for communicating with people who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as in situations when more personal interaction is needed but an onsite interpreter is not available.

As demand for this service increases, the number of video remote interpreting providers in the market is likely to grow as well. How can you be sure your organization chooses the right one?

Here are five important factors to consider.

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Case Study: How a Veteran School Nurse Used Language Solutions to Address Shifting Student Needs

Posted by Scott Brown on August 10, 2017

Alexandria, VA, has a growing populace that is increasingly diverse. Retiring school nurse Olga Wright had a front row seat for the changes over the course of her 40-year career, during which she says she "never experienced a boring day."

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What's The Difference Between Language Translation and Interpretation?

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on August 8, 2017

As a language solutions provider, we know clear communication is the first step to understanding. We also know some of the terminology in our industry can be confusing to someone who’s not familiar with it. That’s why we wanted to take a moment to explain the difference between language translation and interpretation, as well as address some other common questions.

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Could Your Organization Benefit from Video Remote Interpreting? Ask Yourself These Questions.

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on August 2, 2017

One in five of our neighbors here in the United States speak a language other than English at home. That’s more than 61 million people – 25 million of whom say they speak English less than well. Another 28 million Americans are deaf or hard of hearing.

The influence of these diverse audiences is enormous and growing. They are citizens, patients, and consumers. Meeting them in their preferred language builds loyalty, achieves compliance, and increases staff productivity while reducing expenses. The opportunities are clear, but the challenge is that – with hundreds of languages spoken in America today – it is very difficult for any organization to meet this demand.

Video remote interpreting (VRI) is an on-demand platform that provides communication to limited English proficient, deaf, or hard-of-hearing individuals by connecting to a professional interpreter in an offsite location. This is done via camera and microphone on a tablet, smart phone, or desktop, using an Internet or cellular connection. VRI reduces the risk of misunderstanding by capturing body language and facial expressions to read visual cues.

Before implementing VRI, your organization should discuss the needs of your audience and how video will fit into your language access plan. Take the time to have this discussion with your front-line staff and any other key stakeholders. Here are a few questions to prompt discussion:

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Tips for Working With an Onsite Interpreter

Posted by Scott Brown on July 28, 2017

Just like any other aspect of an important meeting, working with an onsite interpreter requires preparation and an eye for some key details.

Here are some things you can do before, during and after your meeting to make sure you communicate successfully.

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Case Study: Providing Language Access to a Swelling Immigrant Population

Posted by Sherri Gallant on July 10, 2017

Alberta Health Services provides health care and promotes wellness to a diverse community of 4.1 million residents in Alberta, Canada. AHS is Canada’s first and largest province-wide, fully integrated health system. It is comprised of 106 acute-care hospitals, almost 8,500 acute care beds, and nearly 24,000 continuing care beds. In all, programs and services are offered at over 650 facilities throughout the province.

All of this is to keep up with the fact that Alberta is Canada’s fastest-growing province. In 2014, Alberta's population-growth rate was more than twice the national average (2.9% vs. 1.1%, respectively).

 Alberta is also extremely diverse. From 2000 to 2015, Alberta’s share of Canada’s immigrant population more than doubled from 6.8% to 14.2%. Eighteen percent of Alberta’s population is made up of immigrants, with that number expected to climb as high as 31% within 20 years.

In fact, by 2036, half the Canadian population will either be an immigrant or second-generation immigrant, according to a recent study. In Calgary and Edmonton (Alberta’s largest cities) that number could reach 61% and 53%, respectively.

To say the least, managing language access for a patient community with exploding diversity is a massive undertaking. AHS has partnered with LanguageLine Solutions to provide much-needed language services to its patient population.

This article describes the eye-opening experience patients and healthcare workers are having with language access.

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The Tool You Need to Bridge the Gap to Multicultural Customers Is Already in Your Employees' Pockets

Posted by Bob Gallagher on June 26, 2017

Believe it or not, a tool that could fundamentally change the way your business interacts with multicultural customers is probably in your employees’ pockets right now.

A mobile phone is already a necessity of daily life and business for most of us. With a mobile language interpreter app like our new InSight SM for iPhone, it can also be your gateway to reliable, accurate, and efficient communication with customers who speak a language other than English.

The limited-English speaking audience in America is much larger than you may realize. More than 25 million people residing in the United States – nearly 10% of the population – are considered “Limited-English Proficient.” This means they do not speak English as their primary language and they have a limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English.

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'I Am There' - An Interpreter's Story (Video)

Posted by Amy Wade on March 28, 2017

Language interpretation is a difficult profession. Taking call after call without knowing what situation is coming up next requires total concentration and a passion for the profession. At LanguageLine Solutions, we understand that each interpreting session and every person on that call is vitally important. 

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