Should Code of Ethics be Limited to Registered RID Interpreters

There is a code of ethics for interpreters that are certified under Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf called Code of Professional Conduct (CPC). It is supposed to be the most important set of rules that interpreters follow when they possess a certification from RID saying that they are qualified and their level of knowledge. Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and National Association of the Deaf (NAD) adopted the CPC in 2005 and is a mainstreamed part of the "curriculum" for interpreters. 

There are seven different rules that certified interpreters must abide by and they are confidentiality, appropriate level of skill for specific job/situation, appropriate conduct, respect consumers, respect peers within the profession which includes interns, students, and colleagues. Interpreters must also maintain ethical business practices and engage in professional development. For further information on these rules, the


is available for your review. 

While these rules are open for interpretation in many ways, RID assumes that the interpreter that signs off on their certification agreeing to CPC has the full understanding behind each rule and how they are applicable. Yes, it is nearly impossible to follow these rules to the dot every single time however there have been cases of gross misconduct and other cases of misunderstanding. As of right now, "the" registry for interpreters is also responsible for ensuring code of conduct is followed. They have also discouraged a need for other code of conducts to be developed for the interpreting community. 

"This Code of Professional Conduct is sufficient to encompass interpreter roles and responsibilities in every type of situation(e.g. educational, medical, legal). A separate code for each area of interpreting is neither necessary nor advisable." (

CPC by RID and NAD

While there are some individuals in the community that trust RID to do their job which is to uphold their certification requirements which happens to include following the CPC, others are wary of their ability to be fully objective. The biggest contradiction is that they are getting paid for these certifications and if they were to nullify a certification, they lose the ability to obtain further monetary benefits from such individual. That is not the only issue that appears. Another issue is that they are only “authorized” to enforce the code of professional conduct on those that have certifications from RID. 

As Aaron on Aaron Cues says in his post "

Cued Language Transliterators and the need for a formal complaint process

", there is a necessity for a formal complaint process when cued speech transliterators violate the code of conduct. Technically RID would not be responsible to provide and enforce a code of conduct for transliterators because they do not obtain certifications from RID. 

Should there be consideration of separating the responsibility from RID for enforcing the code of professional conduct and to allow a separating governing organization (referred as XYZ from this point on) to require all transliterators and interpreters of all types (for the Deaf) to follow a code of professional conduct? XYZ would also be the one to enforce the code of conduct and ensure complaints are fairly treated and heard out. This would possibly require cooperation of RID to follow any judicial decisions that XYZ makes.