I would like to share the story that I had learned last night about the incident between my Deaf Mom's confrontation with a cop who did not even make any effort to communicate through writing! She requested for an interpreter but was denied. So I decided to investigate the rights of a deaf individual according to the law from NAD. quicktime YouTube
Also I found a cop forum page about their discussion on deaf drivers. Some questioned if deaf drivers should drive and even labeled Ridor as the another "I hate the cop guy." Take a look at this link to see how some of the police officers perceive deaf drivers. Some of them even questioned if we could drive. See the quote written from a cop: "The other day I made a stop and found both the driver and passenger to be deaf. This surprised me, as I didn't think a deaf person could get a driver's license. But the driver presented a driver's license and it came back as valid." Whoa! They must be born yesterday! Although it was posted in 2001, still recent post showed some ignorancy among the cops.
According to the ADA law:
11. Q: If the person uses sign language, what kinds of communication will require an interpreter?
A: The length, importance, or complexity of the communication will help determine whether an interpreter is necessary for effective communication. In a simple encounter, such as checking a driver's license or giving street directions, a notepad and pencil normally will be sufficient.
During interrogations and arrests, a sign language interpreter will often be necessary to effectively communicate with an individual who uses sign language.
If the legality of a conversation will be questioned in court, such as where Miranda warnings are issued, a sign language interpreter may be necessary. Police officers should be careful about miscommunication in the absence of a qualified interpreter -- a nod of the head may be an attempt to appear cooperative in the midst of misunderstanding, rather than consentor a confession of wrongdoing.
In general, if an individual who does not have a hearing disability would be subject to police action without interrogation, then an interpreter will not be required, unless one is necessary to explain the action being taken.
Example: An officer clocks a car on the highway driving 15 miles above the speed limit. The driver, who is deaf, is pulled over and issued a noncriminal citation. The individual is able to understand the reasons for the citation, because the officer exchanges written notes with the individual and points to information on the citation. In this case, a sign language interpreter is not needed.
So my Mom was not able to fully understand the reasons for the citation since no effort was made to write notes and that the ticket was in fine print that she could not even read to the point that she needed an interpreter but was denied.
Interesting to note that in this website, there is a statistic of bilingual police officers as we have 269 Spanish interpreters, 64 Vietnamese interpreters in all of these states, in California, Nevada and Ohio.
According to my Mom's friend who is a cop and working on becoming an interpreter, she said that the Nevada State Law made the law effective on May 1st, 2007 to provide interpreters when giving a ticket.
From this website , it said that in Seattle, Washington, it's required by law to provide an interpreter when requested.
" Then, inform the police officer how you want to communicate. Ask for an interpreter (the law requires that an interpreter be provided when requested). If you prefer, use paper and pencil, face to face communication, lipreading or whatever else you are most comfortable with."
My Mom just reported to the internal affairs and she got good support especially from a cop who could sign. So see what happens!