Hawaii RID’s comments on the following Proposed Motion and Amendment Bylaws: 

Proposed Conference Motion:

Regarding the proposed amendment to the by-laws, CM2017.01, we are writing on behalf of our membership in firm opposition of this measure. This amendment is iniquitous to all members worldwide who reside in rural areas. For members who reside in Hawaii, the most geographically isolated place in the United States, and in fact, the world, the proposed measure would have an adverse impact on them both financially and in terms of professional morale. The effects of this measure would also have a devastating financial impact on our organization as an affiliate chapter of RID. We respectfully submit the following testimony in opposition to this measure:

Motion name: CM2017.01

Hawaii RID

Comments:

– The Board of the Hawaii Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf has made it a priority to arrange for more CEU-worthy workshops offered to our members each year. Even so, the cost of hiring a presenter, paying for that individual’s travel and accommodations, and the process of putting on a workshop as an affiliate chapter is such that we can’t offer enough CEUs to our membership to cover the 75% in-person requirement that is currently under consideration. On average, the best that we have been able to offer our membership in a given year is between five and ten hours.

– Our organization could make a commitment to host more workshops for CEUs each year, but the cost of those workshops would be passed on to our members. Our membership is small, numbering only 35 – 40 interpreters, including those who are not RID certified. Expecting them to shoulder the financial burden would be irresponsible and likely result in friction between members and the organization.

– It then follows that we may turn to local talent for workshops. However, this would confine us to hosting the same workshops by the same presenters year after year. While this might satisfy CEU requirements, it limits our educational experience and professional development, ultimately putting Hawaii’s interpreters at a disadvantage compared to interpreters from other affiliate chapters. Also, since continuing education credits from a particular workshop are only valid once in a four years cycle, it is unlikely that HRID would have the resources to offer unique workshops for four years straight using only local talent.

– If we, as an affiliate chapter, are unable to supply our community with the necessary amount of in-person CEUs, that would be tantamount to an expectation that all of Hawaii’s interpreters to travel to the Mainland for a large portion of the proposed 75% of their required CEUs in a cycle, which would be an unfair financial burden to them, considering the cost of airfare, accommodations, and other travel costs.

– Furthermore, the more disadvantaged members of our community — those interpreters living on the outer islands and our local Deaf interpreters — are already faced with many barriers to continuing their professional practice. If implemented, the effects of this measure could price these valuable professionals out of our field altogether.

– Additionally, we observe that the stated goal of this measure, to ensure face-to-face interaction in the modality of American Sign Language, can be achieved outside of the certification maintenance process. Indeed, it should be the obligation of every professional interpreter to interact with Deaf individuals in their community on a daily basis, in their chosen language modality, with respect to their culture and linguistic experience. This is a foundation of our professional practice that supersedes our need for professional development and underpins our work as service providers to the Deaf community. It is the view of our affiliate chapter’s leaders and membership that the proposed change to the by-laws would have devastating, long-reaching effects on our community and other isolated interpreting communities worldwide. It is an ill-conceived measure that would unfairly burden many individuals who are already struggling to maintain their certifications under current circumstances. For these reasons, on behalf of our membership and other professionals in our area, we respectfully ask that the voting member of RID vote to dismiss this proposed change to the by-laws.

 

Proposed Bylaw Amendments A-G:

RID in Hawaii has no comments to submit at this time for the following motions:

Global Editorial Changes
Bylaws Referendum A

Gender Neutral Motion
Bylaws Referendum B

Article IX. Mail Referendum
Bylaws Referendum C

Standing Committees Motion
Bylaws Referendum D

Article XIII Changes
Bylaws Referendum E

Motion to Amend Bylaws to Eliminate Ex Officio
Bylaws Referendum F

Proposed Amendment to the RID Bylaws
Bylaws Referendum G