American Sign Language interpretation is provided by Bridges Oregon, a Deaf-managed nonprofit organization, and includes both in-person and video services.

Provision of interpreting services is a new offering from Bridges Oregon. At this time we will only coordinate, assign, and dispatch interpreters and CART in response to our Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) advocacy and accompaniment service. This will allow us an opportunity to learn how to navigate and build our own interpreting service. Eventually we will transition this program to provide a competitive statewide ASL interpreting service to outside agencies and businesses.

In-house VOCA Interpreting Service will begin in Summer of 2021.

Bridges Oregon Interpreting is the only Deaf-managed and local nonprofit providing interpreting services which allow for on-site and video communication between hearing and Deaf people in Oregon. We believe this is the best way to serve our community and are the only entity with 100% of all net proceeds going to provide services to Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing Oregonians.

Bridges Oregon is committed to building personal and professional relationships with all of its customers and the Deaf community by providing qualified on-site and virtual ASL interpreters.

We are confidential. Our team is HIPAA compliant and trained.

REQUEST INTERPRETING SERVICES (COMING SOON IN 2022)
EVALUATE YOUR INTERPRETER

Hello ASL/English and Deaf Interpreters!

First and foremost, thank you for visiting this page and exploring the option to onboard with Bridges Oregon Interpreting.

BIPOC and diverse ASL/English and Deaf interpreters from out of state are strongly encouraged to onboard with Bridges Oregon to do virtual assignments in Oregon due to an inadequate pool of BIPOC and diverse ASL/English and Deaf interpreters in the state of Oregon.

  • Bridges Oregon provides interpreting services statewide in legal, investigative, and medical situations in support of our Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) advocacy and accompaniment work.
  • Bridges Oregon supports our qualified and certified Deaf Interpreters.
  • Bridges Oregon provides detailed information for each assignment, enabling you to be fully prepared – No guesswork!
  • Bridges Oregon works with its customers to educate them about Deaf culture, ADA, and appropriate use of interpreters, simplifying your role as the interpreter.

If you are an interpreter with RID/NIC, NAD, ACCI, BEI, OHCI, EIPA, and/or any other related sign language interpreter certification and are interested in working with Bridges Oregon, Inc., please contact us or fill out our onboarding form.

ONBOARD WITH US

Bridges Oregon is always open to receiving feedback and suggestions for improvement!

Onboarding inquiries, please contact request@bridgesoregon.org.

Bridges Oregon is honored to bridge communication gaps between the Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing, giving “voice” through American Sign Language (ASL) to individuals in a variety of businesses, organizations, and personal circumstances. Our goal is to create a quality experience for all parties involved.

With Bridges Oregon Interpreting Services, you get:

  • Nationally Certified Interpreters
  • Certified Deaf Interpreters
  • Qualified sign language interpreters
  • Customized services for your unique needs
  • Email confirmation of the interpreter who will provide the interpretation

Bridges Oregon Sign Language Interpreting is for everyone in all kinds of environments to be able to communicate with everybody.

Not only do we provide an experienced interpreter but we handle all coordination down to the very last detail. We eliminate communication barriers so you can serve your customers. You make the call, then we do it all!

 

In situations where Deaf individuals use atypical, or a non-standard sign language, their language needs may extend beyond the fluency of even highly-skilled interpreters. In these circumstances a Deaf Interpreter (some of whom are certified and referred to as a “Certified Deaf Interpreter” or “CDI”) is a valuable addition to the communication team as they specialize in visual language and have specialized training that enables them to communicate effectively with individuals who have unique language needs. When a Deaf interpreter is needed they will team with ASL/English interpreters to facilitate communication. Situations where a Deaf interpreter would be beneficial or required include, but are not limited to:

  • Children still acquiring American Sign Language
  • Deaf individuals living with mental health, physical or cognitive disability
  • Immigrants using foreign or international Sign Language
  • DeafBlind individuals
  • Deaf individuals with an additional disability that impacts communication

National Consortium of Interpreter Education Center (NCIEC) studies indicate that in many situations, use of a Deaf Interpreter enables a level of linguistic and cultural bridging that is often not possible when hearing ASL-English interpreters work alone. (Source: This paragraph is currently plural, if only one source it needs to be changed to singular).

The referral staff at Bridges Oregon can help you decide if a Deaf interpreter is needed for a particular assignment. Bridges Oregon contracts with several Deaf interpreters and Certified Deaf Interpreters.

This service is for our in-house VOCA advocacy and accompaniment services and is not available until summer of 2021.

We provide CART (or Real-time captioning) which uses qualified transcriptionists with specialized solutions that provide instantaneous transcription of the spoken language displayed as text and merged with a video signal for virtual meetings, broadcast, livestream, large meeting sites, and convention settings.

How do CART services work?

Onsite CART

  • The captioner is in the room where the event is occurring.
  • Minimal space is required for the CART captioner set up.
  • Onsite CART is projected onto a screen or shown on monitors viewable by all attendees.
  • Onsite CART can be simultaneously streamed online and made available as a remote CART feed.
  • Instant realtime transcript is created and available immediately upon conclusion of your event.

Remote CART

  • Quick and easy set up for you, the client.
  • Instant and easy accessibility for all participants
  • Firewall-friendly service viewable on multiple devices.
  • Each viewer controls their realtime window
  • Reliable, economical, and easily accessible

Benefits of CART

  • Accessibility
  • “What did they just say?”
  • Language comprehension
  • Transcripts
  • Increased target market
  • Inclusion

Legal guide on Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) (link)

If you need CART service, please contact request@bridgesoregon.org.

DO YOU SCREEN YOUR SIGN LANGUAGE INTERPRETERS?

“Effective communication” is required in order to meet the federal legal standard for services. According to the National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers (NCIEC), 82% of agencies do not conduct a qualification screening of their interpreters. Bridges Oregon is committed to screening every interpreter that onboards with our agency.

WHO PAYS FOR INTERPRETING AND CART SERVICES?

There are several laws related to interpreting and CART and the requirements to provide it. The situation in which the communication access is required will determine which law would be applicable and who is ultimately responsible for the cost of the service. The laws that deal directly with communication access include: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA),the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) amendments of 1997, and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I DO NOT PROVIDE THE ACCOMMODATION? AM I VIOLATING ANY LAW?

Not providing equal communication access could be a violation of the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and/or IDEA.

IS THERE ANY FEDERAL TAX CREDIT AVAILABLE FOR THE PROVISION OF INTERPRETING SERVICES?

Under Section 44 of the Internal Revenue Service Code, many businesses are able to receive federal tax credits for expenses related to using a sign language interpreter. More about tax credit can be found at https://www.ada.gov/taxcred.htm

ARE THERE ANY GOVERNMENT GRANTS TO COVER THESE EXPENSES?

Under the ADA, Rehabilitation Act, and the IDEA, the cost of the service is to be covered by the entity that is putting on the event where interpreting and/or CART is being provided, unless they can show that the expenses of providing the service would be an undue burden.

I REALLY WANT MY PREFERRED INTERPRETER FOR THIS APPOINTMENT, CAN I REQUEST AN INTERPRETER CHANGE?

Sometimes your preferred interpreter might not be available. Any time you have a question regarding who will be at your appointment, contact us and we can give you more information and possibly switch interpreters.

NO INTERPRETER SHOWED UP TO MY APPOINTMENT!

A few things might have happened:

  • First ask your provider if they scheduled an interpreter.
  • If yes, ask them to call the agency to find out what is happening.
  • If not, you decide if it’s important to wait for interpreter arrival or reschedule.
  • If the problem persists, please contact our Client Advocate.

WHY IS MY PREFERRED INTERPRETER NOT CONTRACTED WITH BRIDGES OREGON?

Freelance interpreters are able to choose which interpreter agency or agencies they prefer to work with. We encourage interpreters to work for any agency to support Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing client preferences. If Bridges Oregon does not contract with your preferred interpreter, we will contact the interpreter(s) and see if they are available to do your appointment.

FOR DEAF, DEAFBLIND, AND HARD OF HEARING CLIENTS

If you are paying for interpreting services yourself for a funeral, celebration of life, party, wedding, etc., please contact Bridges Oregon and a service agreement will be sent to you to start the process. This will be available in 2022.

If you have questions regarding who is responsible to pay for a sign language interpreter and/or CART services, please contact our Client Advocate.

WHAT ARE THE OTHER INTERPRETER AGENCIES IN OREGON?

Please visit the Oregon Association of the Deaf’s statewide resource directory. (link)