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Kerryman local news  

30 January 2012 (VOL 10 WEEK 5)

Cloghane and Brandon Wren
We wanted to say a big thank you to the Clochan and Breanainn Wren for their generous donation of €419.19 to us recently. We would also like to thank the Maunsell family for nominating our service for this donation. In addition, special thanks to children of the Maunsell family who were part of another Wren and donated €40 of their proceeds to us too.

Level 1 ISL tutor training with signature
Signature will provide tutor training on the Level 1 Award in Irish Sign Language on the 14th of March in Dublin. The venue and times are to be confirmed. There is no fee for two tutors from Signature Approved Centres including our Centre. For non-approved Centres, the fee is £160.

The closing date for applications is the 14th of February. Teachers must read the Qualification Specification before attending this event. For a copy of the Qualification Specification, please go to the Qualifications section at Teachers must bring a copy to the event.

Further information on Signature's training programme is available at

SLIS job vacancy
The Sign Language Interpreting Service has a vacancy for an Administration & Booking Officer to provide secretarial and administrative support to the Manager, SLIS team, to act as the point of contact for SLIS customers, manage the office and operate effectively the SLIS Referral System.

The closing date for receipt of applications is strictly no later than 1pm Thursday 9th February 2012. Interviews will take place after 20th February 2012. Please note short-listing may apply. Completed application form including the names, addresses and telephone numbers of two referees can be sent to: The Chairperson, Sign Language Interpreting Service, 40 Lower Drumcondra Rd, Drumcondra, Dublin 9.

A job description and application form are available via text/tel: 087 650 6651 or by email to

Workshop for sign language interpreters
The Centre for Deaf Studies in Trinity College will host a workshop for interpreters on the theme of "The Practise Profession Approach to Healthcare Interpreting". It will be held on Friday 24th Feb (6-9pm) & Saturday 25th Feb (10am-5pm). Robyn K. Deaf who is currently a PhD Candidate at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh will present the workshop.

This workshop examines the practise of interpreting in a different frame and as a result, challenges some long-held ideas about ethics and decision-making. This newer frame also appreciates several practise realities that must be overtly addressed. First is that interpreters are active and influential participants in the communication event, that the constructs of language and culture which we learn to use to analyse interpreting work are insufficient for appreciating the myriad demands of community work, and last, that a discussion of the interpreter’s role is incomplete without a discussion of the interpreter’s responsibility.

It is through this new lens that we consider some of the unique demands of healthcare interpreting and discuss not best practises but a best practise process, a different vehicle for formulating and critiquing work decisions. Participants will leave this workshop with new insights about their work, ethical decisions, and expectations for professional development.

Robyn K. Dean, CI/CT, MA was appointed to the faculty of the University of Rochester School of Medicine in 1999, in recognition of her scholarship in the interpreting field and leadership in the education of interpreters, medical students, and other health care professionals. She has been an interpreter for over 20 years, with particular service experience in medical and mental health settings.

This workshop is part of the Medisigns Project (Leonardo da Vinci) Places are limited, so please register your participation by emailing:

Deafblind conference-building bridges
An information event will be held for deafblind people, their families and carers and professionals working in the field on Saturday 25 Feb in NUI Maynooth. participation by emailing:

The theme of the event is "With and Within the Deafblind Community". It is free of charge to all participants. We have been informed that the platform interpreters for the event will be Margaret Woulfe and Caroline O'Leary. It would be important to inform the organisers if you have specific communication support apart from platform interpreting access. participation by emailing:

Further information is available by writing to Deafblind Ireland PO Box 33, Longford or by email to
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23 January 2012 (VOL 10 WEEK 4)

Macbeth – captioned / subtitled show in Siamsa Tire
On Tuesday the 7th of February at 8pm, Macbeth will be performed in Siamsa Tire in Tralee. This is a captioned/subtitled and audio described performance.

People who are Deaf, deafened or hard of hearing will access the show by means of captioning and blind/partially sighted people can access the performance by audio description.

This is facilitated by Arts & Disability Ireland with funding from the Arts Council.

The show will be presented by Ireland’s award winning classics theatre company, Second Age Theatre Company and they promise it will be a fast-paced thriller, with a sumptuous design, and high-octane physical performances.

For more information on assisted performances, contact Arts & Disability Ireland on (01) 8509 002 or

Marraige preparation course for deaf people
A marriage preparation course will be organised by NCPD/ACCORD in Dublin in March. Sign language interpreters will be provided. It will be held in St Vincent’s Deaf Centre, 40 Lower Drumcondra Rd, Dublin 9 on the 23rd of March from 8 to 10pm and on the 24th of March from 10 to 4pm.

If you are interested in participating in the course, please give your details to:

Fr. Gerard Tyrrell, Mob. 087 286 070 Email: Frankie Berry, Mob. 087 940 0333 Email: Fax: (01) 860 0284 or Email:

Do you plan to study in Trinity College?
If so, TCD will hold a Disability Service advice clinic for students, parents and practitioners on Friday 27th January at 6.30pm. It will be held in Room 3074 in the Arts Building. For more information and to book a place, you can email: or tel: 01 8963111.

The Disability Service in TCD would also like to draw your attention to a website for secondary school students with disabilities

Information for parents with deaf kids
Are you a parent of a deaf child? Are you looking for information of interest to parents of deaf kids? The following websites may be of interest to you.

Simply Signing’s mission is to promote the education of Irish Sign Language to all children, to provide colourful access through their publications, devoted to early intervention and educational work with infants, children, educators and their caregivers. Their website is

Sharing the Journey is parent led and an independent service. On their website, they say "Parents give their children roots and wings - roots to know where home is and wings to fly off and practice what has been taught them (Jonas Salk). We are here for all parents from the day your child is identified until you don’t need us".

Their website is still developing and they hope in time, it will evolve into a one-stop-shop for information and support for all parents of d/Deaf and hard-of-hearing children.

Irish Deaf Kids is a Dublin-based non-profit social enterprise whose mission is to support inclusive education for children with hearing issues in Ireland while empowering parents to develop their child’s full potential. They upload a range of interesting information to their site and have a regular newsletter too. Their website is and they have also launched a facebook page too.
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16 January 2012 (VOL 10 WEEK 3)

Access to emerygency services via text
Access to emergency services has finally become a reality for the Deaf and hard of hearing community in Ireland. However, the text service will only run for a period of 6 months until the end of June 2012, whereupon it will be reviewed in full. Following this review, a decision will be made whether to extend the Pilot period beyond June 2012, or make the service available on a full-time basis, amend it or withdraw it.

The 112 SMS service will enable Deaf, hard of hearing and those speech difficulties send a text message to the Emergency Call Answering Service (ECAS) where it will be passed to An Garda Síochána, the Ambulance service, the Fire service, or the Irish Coastguard. The ECAS operator will act as a relay between the texter and the required emergency service.

Emobile, Meteor, Three, O2 and Vodafone are participating in the pilot at this time. The remaining mobile phone communication companies are hoping to join the pilot shortly. The Pilot 112 SMS service is not available from a landline.

To use the service, you must:
Send a text message with the word 'register' to the following number 112. You will then receive the following message about the service- “Now registered. In using this service you accept the terms and conditions listed at a You must give details of home address at". If you do not receive the above confirmation message, then you must not assume that you have successfully registered.

This is an important step in getting access for Deaf and hard of hearing people to vital emergency services. It is critical that people register for this service. We must all demand that it is established on a permanent basis and not just for the 6-month trial basis.

Update on builing work in Ethiopia
A group of people from the Irish Deaf community including our own Veronica White and Willie White are involved in a project to build a Deaf Centre in Ethiopia. We got great news this week- work has commenced on the land, trees have been removed, land has been excavated and foundation work has started. This is a great achievement for all those involved in the project and the realisation of a dream for the Ambo Deaf community. Our sincere thanks to everyone who supported us to date and for those who have fundraised towards the building costs. Huge thanks to Stephen Monaghan and the Vincentian Lay Missionaries, without their vision and dedication, this would not be a reality.

The Irish team who are having a reunion in Cork this week and we’d like to send our best wishes and congrats to all of them- now that work has commenced, they deserve a celebratory drink.

Photos and updates are posted on the following page

Update rrom Education Finance Board (EFB)
The EFB has awarded grants for educational purposes to former residents of institutions and their eligible relatives. Members of the Deaf community who were in residential schools have been eligible for these grants in the past. The EFB has announced that is not in a position to process any further applications that may be received after 30th November 2011.

All applications received after that date will be held on file in order of date of receipt and will be subject to review in the event that the funds available to the Board are not fully expended on applications received before that date.

The Board has been advised that the Government is proceeding with legislation to establish a Residential Institutions Statutory Fund to support the victims of residential institutional abuse. It is intended that former residents who have received awards from the Residential Institutions Redress Board will be eligible to apply for support from the Fund which will make arrangements for the provision of approved services, including educational services, to support the needs of former residents. The Board understands that work on the legislation is progressing and the Minister for Education and Skills expects to publish the Bill shortly.

Further information on the EFB is available at

Email updates from IDS
The Irish Deaf Society has regular email newsletters called E-info, which are of interest to the Deaf community across Ireland. If you would like to receive these, send your email address and the county you live in by email to Tracey Treanor, Development Worker at
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9 January 2012 (VOL 10 WEEK 2)

Happy new year
Our service re-opened on Wednesday and we would like to wish our staff and clients a very Happy New Year. We hope you all had a great Christmas. Thankfully we didn’t have the cold spell we had last year. We would like to thank Veronica, Suzanne and Willie who were on call during the Christmas and New Year period.

We are deaf video
There is a fantastic video going around Facebook at the moment. It shows how the Deaf community is made up of diverse people. From every walk of life, in every corner of the world. Watch this powerful video, a signature statement on just how truly special and global the Deaf community is. With people from 27 different countries participating, We Are Deaf is a special message from Deafnation to you.

Survery on interpreting in medical settings
MEDISIGNS represents a ground-breaking initiative that focuses on providing a better understanding of the impact that interpreted interaction in medical contexts has within the framework of a blended learning programme for Deaf people, interpreters and those in the medical profession. There has been very limited research on the experiences of Deaf people in interpreted (or not) healthcare settings in Europe. Thus, a key aim is to benchmark aspects of the Irish experience vis-à-vis our European project partners.

Medisigns aim to collect preliminary benchmarking data through two avenues:
  1. a survey monkey questionnaire for interpreters in Ireland, and,
  2. a series of focus groups with Deaf people and interpreters who self-select to participate.
The core goal of the MEDISIGNS project is the creation of CPD training in a blended learning environment for interpreters/ medical staff and Deaf people. This small-scale research exercise arises from the need to collect evidence regarding Deaf people's experience of medical encounters with / without interpreters.

The study is designed to investigate:
  1. Issues about access to health care by Irish Deaf people,
  2. The provision of interpreting in medical settings (e.g. GP, Accident and Emergency, maternity care, dentist, meeting with consultant, having an operation, etc.) in Ireland
  3. Issues affecting interpreted medical interactions in Ireland (e.g. what happens when interpreters are provided.
All data collected is anonymous. Results will feed into reports on the Irish situation regarding interpreter provision in medical settings and help in planning continuous professional development courses for Irish interpreters in the field, and in training.

If you are an interpreter, you can take the survey online at Further information on Medisigns is available at: or by email to cgrehan@tcd.iee and/or

International research on deaf people serving on juries
At present, Deaf people are not typically permitted to serve as jurors in criminal trials. There have been ad hoc instances of Deaf people participating in juries in the USA and New Zealand. We are conducting a major research project to assess whether Deaf people can participate in the administration of justice, which was initially initiated by the New South Wales Law Reform Commission in Australia, with a view to informing law reform.

The team are now looking for sign language interpreters and legal professionals who live in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Canada or the United States to participate in stage (2) of the project – to complete an online survey regarding perceptions of sign language interpreting in court and whether deaf people can serve as jurors. ( It should take no more than 25 minutes to complete the survey.

The three stages of the project involve:
  1. deaf and hearing people completing a comprehension test as ‘mock-jurors’ to ascertain if they can comprehend the content of legal discourse (completed),
  2. a survey and follow-up interviews with interpreters and legal professionals about their perceptions of sign language interpreting in court and whether deaf people can serve as jurors, and
  3. a mock-trial involving a deaf juror and sign language interpreters to evaluate the actual impact of having a deaf person on a jury.
The project is being led by A/Prof Jemina Napier in the Department of Linguistics at Macquarie University in collaboration with Prof David Spencer in the Faculty of Law and Management at La Trobe University in Australia, with assistance from Dr Meg Rohan (a statistician) and Gerry Shearim as a research assistant, and the different stages have been funded through a Macquarie University External Collaborative Grant and a Macquarie University New Staff Grant (stage 1) and a Macquarie University DVC-Research Discretionary Fund Grant (stage 2).

The results of this project will lead to a greater understanding of the feasibility for deaf people to serve as jurors, and will potentially influence international law reform, access to justice, and rights as citizens to participate in the administration of justice.

If you have any comments, questions or concerns about the study please do not hesitate to contact: or
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