2011 -- H 5799 SUBSTITUTE A
A N A C T
RELATING TO BUSINESSES AND PROFESSIONS - INTERPRETERS FOR THE DEAF
Introduced By: Representatives Handy, Hearn, Messier, and McNamara
Date Introduced: March 03, 2011
It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
SECTION 1. Sections 5-71-3, 5-71-4, 5-71-8, 5-71-9, 5-71-13 and 5-71-15 of the
General Laws in Chapter 5-71 entitled "Interpreters for the Deaf" are hereby amended to read as
5-71-3. Definitions. -- (1) "Board" means the state board of examiners for interpreters for
(2) "Certified" means any person who is a certified member of the Registry of
Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc., (RID), its successor agency or other agencies as approved by the
department in consultation with the board.
(3) "Consumer" is an individual who is deaf, hard of hearing or other individual with
disabilities whose primary language is sign language (e.g., American Sign Language, manually
coded sign systems).
"Department" means the
(5) "Director" means the director of the department of health.
(6) "Educational Interpreter for the Deaf" means an individual who has specialized
licensure in the provision of sign language interpreting to students who are deaf, hard-of-hearing
or deaf-blind in grades preschool through twelve (12).
means an urgent circumstance that demands immediate action in
order for a consumer to avoid imminent harm or loss. In the event of an emergency, the consumer
may elect to use the services of a nonlicensed interpreter or transliterator as set forth in
regulations promulgated by the department.
"Interpreter for the deaf" means any person who engages in the
interpreting for the deaf as defined in subsection (9) below.
trainee" and "interpreter student" means any person, meeting the
minimum requirements established by the department in consultation with the board who is
currently enrolled in a nationally accredited interpreter training program and participating in the
practicum portion of their studies.
"Interpreting for the deaf" means conveying spoken English into
Language (ASL) (voice-to-sign) or conveying American Sign Language into English (sign-to-
voice), or interpreting English to and/or from a visual gestural system. Such practice shall not
include transliterating for the deaf.
"Screened interpreter or transliterator for the
deaf" means any person who
presents proof of an active state screening or its equivalent and presents proof of successful
completion of an examination as approved by the department in consultation with the board.
"Transliterator for the deaf" means any
person who engages in the practice of
transliterating for the deaf as defined in subsection
below. (12)(13) "Transliterating
for the deaf" means conveying spoken English into Manually
coded English (voice-to-sign), or conveying manually coded English into spoken English (sign-
to-voice), or conveying English on the lips so that it is accessible to speech reading (i.e. oral
transliterating). Such practice shall not include interpreting for the deaf.
5-71-4. Board of examiners -- Creation -- Compensation -- Appointment, terms and
qualifications of members. -- (a) There shall exist within the state department of health a board
of examiners of interpreters for the deaf. The board
shall consist of
nine (9) five (5) persons who
shall be residents of the state of
two (2) three (3) nationally certified
interpreters, one screened interpreter, one interpreter eligible under section 5-71-12, three (3) and two (2) consumers , one special license holder and one consumer of specialized communication
modalities as defined in section 5-71-3.
The certified members shall hold certification from
the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, and hold an active and valid license in this
state, except for the first appointed members who shall be persons engaged in rendering interpreting
services for a period of at least five (5) years , and are qualified for license under the provisions
of this chapter. The screened member shall hold valid screening from a recognized
state-screening, and shall hold an active and valid license in this state, except for the first appointed member
who shall be a person who has been engaged in rendering interpreting services for a period of at
least five (5) years, and is qualified for license under the provisions of this chapter. The
special licensed member shall have expertise in one of the communication modalities defined in
section 5-71-3(7), or another specialized communication modality.
(b) All appointments
made under this section
after the effective date of this act [March 29, 2006]
shall be made by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. In
appointments to the board, the governor shall give consideration to recommendations made by the
commission on the deaf and hard-of-hearing established pursuant to section 23-1.8-1. All
members shall serve terms of three (3) years. Members shall serve until the expiration of the term
for which they have been appointed or until their successor is appointed. No person shall be
appointed to serve more than two (2) consecutive terms. When a vacancy upon the board occurs,
a replacement shall be appointed for the remainder of that term as prescribed in this section.
(c) The board shall reorganize annually during the month of December and shall elect a
chairperson and vice chairperson for the subsequent calendar year. The board may elect from
among its members such other officers as it deems necessary.
Five (5) Three (3) members of the board shall constitute a quorum
to do business. A
majority vote of those present shall be required for action.
(e) Members of the board shall be removable by the governor pursuant to the provisions
of section 36-1-7 of the general laws and for cause only, and removal solely for partisan or
personal reasons unrelated to capacity or fitness for the office shall be unlawful.
5-71-8. Qualifications of applicants for licenses. – (a) To be eligible for licensure by
the board as an interpreter for the deaf or transliterator for the deaf, or educational interpreter for
the deaf, the applicant must submit written evidence on forms furnished by the department,
verified by oath, that the applicant meets all of the following requirements:
(1) Is of good moral character;
(2) Meets the certification or screened requirements as defined in regulations
promulgated by the department; and
(3) Pays the department a license fee, that does not exceed fifty dollars ($50.00).
(b) To be eligible for licensure by the board as an educational interpreter for the deaf, the
applicant must meet all of the requirements as described in subsection (a) and must further
present proof of successful completion of the educational interpreter performance assessment
(EIPA), written and performance tests, or a similar test as approved by the board, at a
performance level established by the board.
5-71-9. Licensure and regulations of interpreters for the deaf. -- (a) Licensure shall be
granted in either transliterating or interpreting independently. A person may be licensed in both
areas if he or she is qualified as defined in
(b) No person shall
holds hold him or herself out as being able to
interpreting for the deaf, or transliterating for the deaf, or educational interpreting for the deaf as
defined in section 5-71-3 unless he or she shall be licensed
in accordance with the provisions
of the laws of
this chapter. No person shall hold himself or herself out as being an
interpreter for the deaf as defined in section 5-71-3 unless he or she is licensed in accordance with
the provisions of this chapter.
(c) Each licensed interpreter for the deaf upon commencing to practice, and upon any
change in address shall promptly notify the department of said change in home or office address,
and shall furnish any other information to the department that it may require. Every licensed
interpreter for the deaf shall annually, before July 1st pay the department a license renewal fee,
that does not exceed
thirty-seven dollars and fifty
cents ($37.50) fifty dollars ($50.00) for each
license, corresponding to the area under which the person is practicing. The department may
suspend the authority of any licensed interpreter for the deaf to practice for failure to comply with
any of the requirements of this chapter or the regulations promulgated thereunder. The
department makes available for public inspection, a complete list of the names of all interpreters
for the deaf licensed and practicing in the state.
(d) Three (3) types of licensure may be issued to interpreters and or transliterators for the
(1) A certified license shall be granted to interpreters or transliterators who have met the
certification requirements as set forth in regulations promulgated
by the department
(2) A screened license shall be granted to interpreters who have met the educational
requirements as set forth in regulations promulgated by the department, and who have
successfully completed a recognized state screening or state equivalent as determined by the
department in consultation with the board
(student) license shall be granted to persons who are currently enrolled in an accredited interpreter training program to
practice interpreting and transliterating. Persons who receive the temporary license shall be supervised by
the interpreter training program. The licensure is only valid while the person is enrolled as a
student in the program and supervised by a nationally certified interpreter. Beginning July 1, 2012, an educational interpreter
be granted to interpreters or transliterators who meet the requirements of subsection 5-71-8(b).
(e) All licensed interpreters shall be required to complete continuing education, as set
forth in regulations promulgated by the department.
5-71-13. Grounds for suspension or revocation of licenses. – (a) The board may
recommend to the director of the department of health the issuance, renewal, or revocation of a
license, or suspension, placement on probation, censure or reprimand a licensee, or any other
disciplinary action that the board may deem appropriate, for conduct that may result from, but not
necessarily be limited to:
(1) Obtaining his or her license by means of fraud, misrepresentation, or concealment of
(2) Being guilty of fraud, misrepresentation, concealment or material misstatement of
facts or deceit in connection with his or her services
rendered as an interpreter
or for the deaf,
transliterator for the deaf, or educational interpreter for the deaf;
(3) Being guilty of unprofessional conduct as defined by the rules established by the
department in consultation with the board, and/or has violated any standard of professional or
ethical conduct adopted by the National
registry Registry of Interpreters for the deaf Deaf;
(4) Violating the
continuing education requirements of this chapter as defined in
subsection 5-71-9(d), and rules and regulations as promulgated by the department;
(5) Violating any lawful order, or any provision of this chapter or of the rules or
regulations promulgated in this chapter;
(6) Aiding or assisting another person in violating any provision of this chapter or any
rule or regulation adopted under this chapter;
(7) Departure from or failure to conform to the current standards of acceptable and
prevailing practice of interpreting for the deaf.
(b) Working under a license that is expired or on inactive status, working under a license
when certification is expired or on inactive status, and practicing interpreting without being
exempt under chapter 5-71 shall be considered to be practicing without a license.
(c) The department shall respond to all recommendations from the board under this
section within thirty (30) calendar days.
5-71-15. Persons and practices exempted. -- The provisions of this chapter do not apply
interpreter working as an interpreter or a transliterator
interpreters or transliterators performing as
interpreters or transliterators performing in an
defined in subsection 5-71-3(6) and as set forth in regulations promulgated by the department.
(4) Nonlicensed individuals who are certified members of the Registry of Interpreters for
the Deaf, Inc., (RID) its successor agency or other agency as approved by the department in
consultation with the board, who may provide services for a maximum of twenty-five (25) hours
per calendar year.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.