Video with ASL

The following links will take you to short video clips illustrating the correct signage of some commonly used law enforcement dialogue, in American Sign Language.

The intent of this project is to see whether a resource such as this is of use to Police Officers, State Troopers and other potential first responders who may need to attempt to converse with a Deaf ASL-user before the arrival of a qualified sign language interpreter. Under the best of circumstances, a considerable amount of time passes before an interpreter arrives at the scene of an emergency, time during which a responding law enforcement officer or other first responder might be able to have a rudimentary exchange of information with a Deaf ASL user if they could understand some basic signs.

The hope is that by studying some of these clips, a law enforcement officer could familiarize him/herself with some commonly used signs and incorporate them into communications with Deaf ASL users.

THESE CLIPS ARE NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE - OR SUBSTITUTE FOR THE PRESENCE OF - A QUALIFIED AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE INTERPRETER IN ANY INTERACTIONS WITH DEAF CITIZENS.

We are very interested in hearing from police officers and law enforcement personnel whether these clips are of value to you and, if so, whether you have suggestions on how we could make them more effective and useful for the stated purpose of improving short-term communication during emergency situations.

Please send us an email for feedback. Please be sure to include your full name, and which law enforcement agency you are associated with.

Only e-mails from law enforcement personnel and other first responders will be replied to.


This information is provided by the Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.