Here is the summary of my meeting notes from Sunday. I was taking notes while also participating in the conversation at times, so I might have missed some information or gotten some information incorrect. Please let me know if you notice anything that needs editing.
This meeting was facilitated by Ritchie Bryant, Deaf Member at Large. Other board members in attendance were Erica West Oyedele, Vice-President, LaVona Andrew, Member at Large, and Julie Anne Schafer representing EPS (Ethical Practice System Review Task Force). Thank you, RID Board, for making this happen!
Prior to the meeting, the ITOC counsil collected questions and from our membership to ask the board. The information below is organized by question/topic.
Criminal Conviction Policy
What is RID's current status with this policy?
We need more time to rewrite some parts of CCP. We are still gathering more feedback to see which crimes would apply. We need to narrow our scope. We will be doing PPO (Power, Privilege, Oppression) training with those on the committee that will be reviewing the convictions. Once we finish the next revision, we will be sharing the document with ITOC and BLeGIT to make sure both groups are satisfied with the revisions. We will be sending out a call for comments again next year around January. We will then review the comments and see if we need more discussion/revision before setting up the policy.
In regards to the concern about who will be most impacted, there will be a big difference in who we think will be impacted vs. who will actually be impacted. We are not looking at convictions related to drugs and/or theft, but at those related to people who have taken advantage of Deaf people. Currently with EPS, a person must complain within 90 days for action to take place. However, often criminal convictions happened after the 90 day deadline which prevents EPS from actively doing anything about that situation. (ex. situations related to physical abuse of Deaf children). This is not a new concern but a reoccurring one. This policy will help us confront situation when our 90 day policy prevents us from doing so. Another reason for this policy is that school districts require a background check for any individual who works at a school. However some states waive the background check if the person is RID certified, which we feel is not right. We feel we must act to be responsible and protect the interest of the community but we also are not wanting to control interpreters too much. It is a fine balance which is why we need your feedback.
(In the most recent edition of the VIEWS, EPS wrote an article with more information)
PPO (Power, Privilege, Oppression) CEUs
what is the current status on this?
It seem there is an assumption that RID not making progress with PPO CEUs. It is an on going process, and we have been talking about it during board meetings. We set up a work group that includes representatives from each of the three counsils and Professional Development Committee. We asked for Member Sections representation as well but we currently have no MS representatives in the work group. We wanted to wait for MS representation before proceeding which caused us to have a slow start. We currently have a rough draft that we are translating to ASL. Once done, we will be looking for feedback on the document. PDC already gave their approval on it. Keep your eyes open for more information.
(If anyone would like to represent ITOC in the work group, please let us know!)
The current workshops focus on diversity in terms of of a binary understanding (Deaf-hearing, female-male, gay-straight, etc) How will RID broaden its scope to include different communities and address cultural/identity differences within leadership, workshops, trainings, and conferences?
Training is done by members. If the feeling is that information is missing from workshops and training, then we need members to be more involved. Host training sessions. Be involved with the conference committee.
- how is RID going to be sure to allow an equal amount of POC into the RID conference in 2017 with a lottery system?
This is more of a HQ question than an RID board question. However, that being said, we tried our best to answer. Stephanie Chao, ITOC Chair, answered with information from recent meeting about the conference with additional information from the board.
With the lottery system there is no way to guarantee who gets in, and unfortunately, the numbers are not on our side. Realistically, the conference numbers have never been on our side. Conferences have always been limited to who can afford to go. However, this year we will have a live streaming option for individuals or group. If an AC or group of interpreters register to live stream ahead of time, the group can get the handbook and supplemental materials that will be used at the conference. We are hoping that even though there is a smaller number of attendees onsite, there will be a greater overall impact.
Also, each Affiliate Chapter and most member sections will have 2 guaranteed spots they can hand out. The member sections related to identity (ITOC, Deaf Caucus, BLeGIT, DPI) will each get 3 guaranteed spots PLUS 1 "free" spot. For the "free" spot, RID will be covering conference fees, hotel room, and will be giving a travel stipend. The board will be giving guidelines to the ACs and MSs to help us figure out how to hand out these guaranteed spots.
(The ITOC counsil is currently brainstorming on how to assign out these 4 spots. Potentially having our own lottery for interpreters of color? Or using the spots for a Deaf Interpreter of Color, an interpreting student of color, a new counsil member for ITOC? We are open to ideas and feedback from our membership. We will keep everyone posted as we figure this out.)
Deaf Community of Color
How does the board plan to support/foster relationships with the Deaf community of color?
How will RID maintain/improve relationships with organizations focused on POC (NADC, NBDA, Mano a Mano, NAOBI, etc...)?
There currently is no plan in place, but I (Ritchie) will bring it up during our board meeting. This is an area we can improve on, especially as the Deaf member represetative of the board.
What policy/procedures/commitments, if any, will the new CASLI group take as it relates to transparency within the pool of test screeners/raters?
It is important for us to recognize CASLI as a separate group. These are questions that need to be asked of CASLI, we can't answer for them. ITOC can contact CASLI if you are interested to learn more about their procedures and testing. For RID's part, we have already informed them it is important to include diverse groups of people in their process, including interpreters of color. Feel free to contact them and show our involvement and support.
(If there is interested in having us (ITOC) contact CASLI to set up a meeting, we would be happy to do so. Please let us know if there is an interest.)
What provisions are made to support and retain non-traditional age students of color as they enter the interpreting field and strive for NIC certification?
What's RID's position on ageism?
How does the organization demonstrate their position?
Ageism hasn't been a topic we have specifically discussed, but like all -isms, it is worth talking about. This will be something covered through PPO training. The RID board as a responsibility to its members; however, change in the field happens through members in their communities. Reach out to people in your home town, your Affiliate Chapter, your local ITPs. Host conferences and workshops. We all need to show support in topics that are related to PPO, not only on the national level, but in our own communities as well. We need members to care about issues like this and work from the ground up.
Executive Director Search
Who is on the committee for this search and are different groups within RID being properly represented (ITOC, Deaf Caucus, DPI, etc)?
We set up a committee one and a half years ago, the transition team. We selected the team by asking counsil members and board members to summit names of people they thought would be a good fit. We partnered with different Deaf groups as well. The people on the transition team came from that list of recommendations. The team includes Deaf individuals as well as people from different ethnic groups. We made sure to have people with varying identities to include different perspectives. Throughout the last year and a half, some people withdrew from the team while others were added on. The transition team did the originally screening. The interview process had multiple steps, and through the process some applicants withdrew. Once we narrowed down the candidants, we opened it up to members for their feedback. We will go through your feedback before making our final decision.
The board has committed to transparency, but we need to ask what that means for us as a membership. For example, some candidates from diverse backgrounds had to withdraw because their candidate statements were being made public. Some of their current employers did not know they were looking for work elsewhere, so finding this out could negatively impact their livelihood. Since the position is looking for someone with a unique set of skills, the number of applicants were limited. Sharing candidate statements for the reasons mentioned further limited the pool of applicants.