Ohio's court interpreter program in reality goes back to the mid-90s when interpreter qualifications, policies, and training were initially identified by the Ohio Commission on Racial Fairness. In 1993, the Supreme Court of Ohio and the Ohio State Bar Association created that commission to examine the issue of racial bias in the justice system. Its report was issued in 1999.
As we had reported last October, by the end of 2008 the Supreme Court had rules, guidelines, policies and procedures, and had set them out for public comment, and by the beginning of last year it had its first class of 23 certified interpreters.
Its Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio (Sup. R. 80. Definitions and 88. Appointment of a Foreign Language Interpreter or Sign Language Interpreter.) were finalized & adopted by the Judicial Conference on June 11, 2011, but it was decided to delay implementation until January 1, 2013 to allow courts at the local level sufficient time to prepare for the inclusion.
The Court's news service this morning reported that the Court has made a roster of interpreters certified in American Sign and foreign languages available on its website to assist Ohio courts with their new obligation under Sup.R. 88. Organized by geographic region, the list includes court interpreters based in Ohio and elsewhere but available for work here, and also lists those individuals who are provisionally certified in a foreign language and those who are ASL qualified interpreters.