The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. (RID) joins the Deaf people of South Africa, the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), the World Association of Sign Language Interpreters (WASLI) and the U.S. National Association of the Deaf (NAD) in expressing our disappointment and dismay at the incomprehensible interpreting services provided at the commemoration services honoring the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela.
Mandela once said, “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”
The legacy of Mandela represents a commitment to civil rights and human rights. The United Nations recognizes access to language as a basic human right. The very rights for which Mandela fought were violated for Deaf people during his memorial ceremony yesterday. The planners for the event failed to provide appropriate interpretation services to communicate the international tributes to Mandela to the hearts of the international Deaf community.
To read the full text of the statement, click the video description under the video statement. Below is the video from RID: