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The development of the sign language interpreter system in the United States
The development of the sign language interpreter system in the United States is traced to its informal and formal origins. It follows the progress in the field of interpreting up to the present and incorporates the establishment and operation of the National Interpreter Training Consortium and the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. The federal support structure for the various types of interpreting is outlined. A breakdown is provided to indicate the support structure from the federal level on down to the various interpreter services and interpreter training programs. Through this historical review and analysis of the existing interpreter system, conclusion is made that the present system meets only the basic needs of deaf people in the United States and that it is inadequate in some aspects. A projection that the interpreter system will continue to develop to further meet the needs of deaf people is made.