Needs and Challenges
Utilize Remote Interpreting Technology to fulfill LEP needs and ensure quality services.
As LEP populations continue to grow, the demand on interpreter services increasingly poses great challenges to large and small jurisdictions in both rural and urban areas. Further, the variety of languages needed is constantly fluctuating. It has become essential, in some areas, to use technology in the court to allow interpreters to be electronically present.
Currently, according to the survey, the majority of states utilize some form of remote interpreting technology. The most commonly used form is audio or telephonic interpretation, which is standard telephone. Almost 90% of the respondents use audio interpretation. Over half of the jurisdictions report that they use video conferencing and video remote interpreting. Web-based applications, such as Skype, are also commonly used. Courts frequently are using specialized telephone equipment and voice over internet protocol. Translation software and automated interpreter software are also used, but much less frequently than other options available.
A number of states specified that because they are decentralized, technology usage varies widely across the state. Local courts employ a variety of technology for video and/or audio conferencing. Also, remote ASL is becoming more frequently utilized.
In addition to the technology listed above, jurisdictions reported in the survey that they use the following technology and also provided additional detail:
Web-based Toolkit Features
Less than half of the jurisdictions participating in the survey report having a web-based toolkit with language access resources. These resources are made available to court staff, including judges, interpreters, interpreter coordinators, and clerks.
Jurisdictions that answered that they do have a web-based toolkit were asked to describe the most helpful or effective features that they would recommend to other jurisdictions. Many states recommended posting online resources and materials for judges and staff, including bench cards, information cards, and court rules and guidance on providing language access. Also frequently recommended was posting online information for interpreters and potential interpreters, including interpreter resources, and certification information.
Jurisdictions recommended the following web-based toolkit features:
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