#ScrapTheFramework latest: 1000 sign the letter, framework is not fit for purpose

As reported on the Limping Chicken blog earlier in the week, over 1000 signatories signed the open letter to Francis Maude MP, asking him to #ScrapTheFramework.
The letter included Len McCluskey, General Secretary of Unite the Union, leading campaign organisations and several MPs.
You can read the letter on NUBSLI’s campaign page.
This framework will change the way interpreting services are delivered to Deaf people in the UK, as well as covering all spoken language interpreting and other communication support such as lip speakers, deafblind interpreters, note takers and speech to text reporters. Privatisation of a whole sector in one go.
There is still work to be done in making representations to the Crown Commercial Service as there is a proposed two-hour minimum for interpreters and no travel expenses.
Aside from terms and conditions and fees the actual framework needs much more work. There are no stipulations about where Trainee Sign Language Interpreters (TSLIs) are able to work leaving agencies able to put Trainees into child protection and mental health. The NRCPD’s view. As long as registration is stipulated that is fine. It is not. Registered is RSLI: Registered Sign Language Interpreter. TSLI is on the register but not registered. Confused? So is everyone else. Trainees have yet to reach the National Occupational Standards and as such need to be protected and Deaf people safeguarded appropriately. NRCPD states on their website that Trainees should not work in legal settings and mental health. NRCPD, do what you say and tell the CCS no Trainees in mental health. Child protection should be explicitly stated too. As an unwritten rule the interpreting community has recognised this area as a no go for Trainees for years due to its legal as well as it’s moral nature.
On the spoken language interpreting side, there are low level qualifications stated for all areas, leaving the quality of provision dangerously low. Given that most agencies are motivated by profit the lowest possible common denominator gets the job not who is the most suitable. Private contracts are hardly safe when monitoring is left in the hands of private agencies who can make up their own figures (cf Ministry of Justice framework and ALS now Capita TI).
The way Deaf people are talked about is patronising and erroneous. “Non-spoken”, interpreters enable Deaf people “to access hearing” and if you are Deafblind you have access to video relay services. Hardly written from the basis of good knowledge and practice, or even common sense. No. This framework is a disaster waiting to happen.

NUBSLI launches its #ScrapTheFramework Campaign

scrap-frameworkNUBSLI has launched its #ScrapTheFramework campaign and is asking organisations and individuals to sign an open letter to Francis Maude MP, Minister of the Cabinet Office asking for the new national framework for language services to be scrapped.
The reasons are that the framework is not robust or fit for purpose, does not have appropriate minimum standards of qualifications, little monitoring is proposed and has many loopholes that will allow sub-standard levels of service.
Why? People with no interpreting qualifications can be used in mental health, child protection, health, employment and in every area of public life. There are other reasons but do you really need more than that?
This blog has reported throughout the disastrous MoJ framework which started in 2011. NUBSLI has seen nothing to suggest the government is trying to uphold standards and safeguard the Deaf community with this framework. We have seen what has happened with the MoJ contract. The national agreement was effectively ripped up, the national register was superfluous, legal personnel were wandering the streets and, in desperation, hounding workers in chinese takeaways trying to find anyone who could come to court to interpret or even used Google translate. The MoJ saga continues. Even after a scathing independent report by Matrix, the government still denies the scope of the problems.
Minor improvements have been promised with this new framework. There is still a lack of consultation with organisations and the Deaf community are still largely unaware of what is about to happen. And the framework in its current state looks like it will roll back the Deaf community’s progress by about 30 years.
See NUBSLI’s article here:
And make sure you sign the open letter and get everyone you know to sign too:
Deadline Wednesday 25th February 5pm.