Mike Crockart MP for Edinburgh West is the first elected member in the UK to make Deaf Action’s SignVideo available at his constituency office.

The service provided through Deaf Action in collaboration with SignVideo, an award winning service developed by Significan’t, a deaf-led Social Enterprise, means that Deaf BSL constituents are able to visit Mike to discuss their concerns without having to worry about a language barrier. The latest technology means that a translator joins the meeting via a webcam and provides simultaneous translation.

The online interpreting service for deaf people will provide instant access to experienced SASLI registered BSL/English interpreters using the most advanced technology in the field.

Commenting Mr Crockart said:

“Throughout the UK there is a shortage of British Sign Language/English interpreters; this is a particular problem throughout Scotland with the ratio of qualified interpreters to sign language users estimated at around 1 interpreter for every 200 sign language users.

“This shortage means that interpreters are booked up in advance and many interpreters are unable to accept bookings at short notice.  Commonly, sign language interpreters are booked for a minimum of two hours, even for an appointment that may only last 15 minutes.  Clearly, this booking process is not very convenient for deaf users of the service.

“SignVideo will allow Deaf Action to deliver the same high quality interpreting service, for which Deaf Action’s Communication Support Agency is renowned, as an online service.   Deaf Action’s SignVideo will provide deaf people with access to video interpreters within seconds – over the last six months the average wait for a SignVideo interpreter has been 30.6 seconds!

“This technology will revolutionise the way that I can communicate with Deaf BSL constituents. I hope other elected representatives across Scotland will think about adopting SignVideo.”

Deaf Action offers a full time online interpreting service throughout Scotland.


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