ON HAND: Would you be pissed?

This originally appeared in The Tactile Mind Weekly in Trudy’s ON HAND column.

Picture this:

You arrive at work and find out an interpreter who you don’t directly work with has spread a rumor, in both ASL and spoken English that you were in a “serious car accident.” You confront the interpreter about this ridiculous rumor. The interpreter denies everything to the point of panicked tears and wild gestures, even when witnesses support you directly.

After weeks of faxes, e-mails, and calls from concerned friends wanting to make sure you’re alive, that you’re annoyed. Then you find out from an interpreter agency that the same interpreter used your name as a reference two years ago (while you were living elsewhere), even though you never worked with this interpreter in a professional capacity at any time, nor socialized with him/her. In fact, you’ve always stayed away because you feel s/he cannot understand your ASL.

So you decide to file a grievance with the certifying organization. After six months of a failed mediation meeting (where you are literally prevented from leaving three times, though you are told you can leave the meeting at any time) and unnecessary delays, you lose the case. The ethics committee has decided that even though you have e-mails, letters, and verbal accounts that verify what happened, it’s all hearsay because you didn’t directly see the interpreter say the rumor and that the rumor was spread out of concern for a colleague rather than to deliberately harm you.

Would you be pissed?

I am.

Copyrighted material. This article can not be copied, reproduced, or redistributed without the written consent of the author.

Related posts:

Comments Closed