Video's Transcript


I am Dianne Shearer, Director of Interpreter and CART Services at MCDHH. This vlog is in regards to a proposed new state rate structure for sign language interpreters. This new rate structure is the result of a work group formed by MCDHH with participation from members of the deaf and interpreting community.  I will share the names of the work group members later but first want to explain our current rate structure and the timeline for establishing new rates.

The current FY16 rates were valid through June 30, 2016. These FY16 rates have been extended for a limited time; through December 31, 2016, while we work to establish new rates to go into effect on January 1, 2017. It is an important time for us to collect your feedback on a new proposed rate structure that was created by the work group.

Here is our current rate structure. I understand you will not be able to see it clearly in this vlog so I will add a hyperlink below for you to view the current rate structure.

As you can see there are multiple rows, totaling thirteen. Each relate to a specific certification, such as SC:L, Special Certificate: Legal or legally approved by MCDHH. There are various certifications represented within the rows, Deaf Interpreters, CDIs MCDHH State Screened Interpreters as well.

Now I will show you what the newly proposed rate structure looks like. [Holding up a copy of the new proposed structure]

There is a substantial difference as you can see for yourself between these two documents. The new rate structure has not been finalized or adopted. We are soliciting your feedback for the proposed rate structure. The proposed rate structure has only four rows.

The first row recognizes those who are Fully Certified. One example, CDIs would be considered fully certified as well as those who possess the NIC certification.   Interpreters who hold BEI certification would be fully certified.  BEI is a certification from the state of Texas.  The Fully Certified Interpreter category also includes interpreters who have the combined certification of CI and CT or Oral Interpreter Certification or Oral Transliteration Certification. The RSC is also classified as Fully Certified.

The second row recognizes those who are Partially Certificated. Some interpreters within in the community have the CI, Certification of Interpretation but do not have the Certificate of Transliteration, CT. They have one certification this means they are Partially Certified, not Fully Certified.  Partial certification also included old certifications. For example, IC or TC, OIC, Oral Interpreting Certificate for Interpreting into Spoken English  Those are some example.

The third row recognizes MCDHH State Screened Interpreters: referred to as Level II. This includes those interpreters who have taken and passed MCDHH’s Screening and have also passed RID’s written examination. Those two combined, will receive a rate increase.

The fourth row recognizes those interpreters who have passed screening  and are MCDHH approved but have yet to take and pass RID’s written examination.

This new rate structure, remember it is only proposed, recognizes those interpreters working with in the community who are specialists in the field. For example, those who are legally approved would have an increase of five dollars regardless of their being categorized as Fully or Partially Certified. If legally approved, they will receive a five dollar rate increase from their base rate.

Also,   the proposed rate structure recognizes Deaf-Blind interpreters with a five dollar rate increase. Interpreters who have the SC:L, Special Certificate: Legal will have an increase of ten dollars, regardless of Full of Partial Certification.

There are some newly proposed specializations that have not been recognized previously, Tri-Lingual Interpreters. Those interpreters with expertise interpreting English, ASL and Spoken Spanish would receive a five dollar rate increase and it applies to Tri-Lingual Interpreters who are approved but are not yet officially certified. For those interpreters who are certified Tri-Lingual Interpreters, there is a ten dollar rate increase. The only state currently in the country who offers certification is the state of Texas, through BEI certification.

Another newly proposed category is for international sign language certification, also known as Gestuno. It recognizes those individuals with a ten dollar rate increase.

The new rate structure also recognizes years of experience through rate increases at five-year intervals, shown left to right across the columns. You can see rate increases based on years of experience. The rate increase is based on recognition of the number of years worked and on continuing education.

I would like to recognize and thank the workgroup members for all of their assistance in developing this newly proposed rate structure.

  • Lisa Chango
  • Stephanie Clark
  • Nathan Fowler
  • Rachel Heller
  • Carol Hilbinger
  • Sue Phillip
  • Andrew Veith
  • Joan Wattman

Those individuals represent both the deaf and interpreting communities.  They worked hard and diligently in developing this new rate structure.  They also made sure no one would experience a rate decrease in all of the categories in the structure.

We would now like for you to review and compare the current rate structure and the proposed rate structure. Please share your comments with MCDHH .  You can submit written comments or signed videos to Commissioner’s Executive Assistant, Hana Hanigan at Ami.Hanigan@Massmail.State.Ma.US by Friday November 18,, 2016. ).

Thank you!  Your attention and participation is important in establishing new state rates for interpreters and transliterators across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

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