SAN DIEGO, February 22, 2021 — As companies continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccinations begin to roll out, Language Service Provider Interpreters Unlimited is taking a proactive approach. They are assisting in getting vaccinations to their contracted linguists as fast as possible. Interpreters and translators work with organizations and the public on the front lines and have a higher risk for potential exposure. It is important that they have the opportunity to get vaccinated with front line and emergency workers as they are essential and play a major role in so many situations where health and safety are a concern.
Linguists work in medical settings, including Emergency, ICU, and COVID-19 Departments, face-to-face with caregivers and patients, interpreting in their native language to deliver critical care. From emergency room situations with immune compromised individuals to court matters, educational settings, health and human services and on, interpreters are relied on by limited to Non-English speaking and Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing individuals on a daily basis.
IU has provided contracted linguists with a letter stating this as well as supplied them with supporting documentation from the California Department of Public Health further establishing their status as essential medical workers and helping to qualify them to receive the vaccine. Within the first couple of days of sending the letter out to linguists, many have already been vaccinated and others have been scheduled for vaccination. “We want to make every effort that we can to provide safety and comfort to linguists and the public on and off the job. We are happy to do our part, to do whatever we can to help.” remarked IU Vice President Shamus Sayed.
A healthcare interpreter stated, “As an interpreter still currently making visits to medical sites to perform in-person interpretation under the current pandemic, I feel somewhat overlooked if not left out by the authorities regarding the COVID-19 vaccination.” Interpreters are concerned and feel vulnerable to COVID-19 in certain work environments and situations. Some also feel that protections in certain settings are not completely sufficient in making them feel comfortable and less at risk.
Beyond medical settings, some interpreters also feel that certain courts lack proper screening, safety protocols and mask enforcement. These are environments where interpreters are in close contact with many people consistently throughout the workday. They also deal with inmates through prison visits and in courts, and prisons have had a tough time keeping COVID-19 under control. Getting linguists the vaccine further ensures a safer environment and there has been a great response to the proactivity of IU.
With the use of video remote interpretation and over the phone interpretation, along with masks, social distancing, and other safety precautions on-site, IU has been able to continue business uninterrupted during COVID-19. Helping linguists get vaccinated is the next step in ensuring business continues and safety precautions are met.
IU has great respect for the seriousness of COVID-19 and is thrilled to see a vaccine created and distributed so quickly. However, with development, testing, approval, production, and distribution happening in unprecedented record speed, they also recognize the hesitancy by some to get vaccinated and respect their feelings. The vaccine is recommended but completely voluntary, and IU is happy to offer this assistance in getting vaccinated to their contracted linguists who are open to it.
For more information about Interpreters Unlimited, Inc., please visit www.interpreters.com or call 800-726-9891.
About Interpreters Unlimited, Inc.
The IU Group of companies include: Interpreters Unlimited, Accessible Communication for the Deaf, Albors & Alnet, Arkansas Spanish Interpreters and Translators, and IU GlobeLink, LLC, and are headquartered in San Diego, California as a minority-owned company. IU Group is committed to providing equal opportunity in the work environment with its diverse team to aid in supplying linguistic and cultural interpretation services to clients. A combined 70 years in the industry has demonstrated a surplus of leadership and best practices, which has helped establish its respected role in the language services community. Its services include interpretation, document translation and non-emergency medical transportation.