A Certified Deaf Interpreter is a specialist who provides cultural and linguistic expertise. As a native signer with a lifetime experience as a Deaf individual, who is also trained to ensure that communication is effective, a CDI is a valuable asset to any situation that requires complicated and sometimes emotional communication situations. A CDI is often known simply as a Deaf Interpreter, or a Relay/intermediary Interpreter (commonly used in the courts).
A CDI often works as a unit with an American Sign Language interpreter possessing any of the RID’s certificates not limiting to CSC, CI/CT, and NIC. The Deaf interpreter, depending on the individual’s experience and training, can work with Deaf children whose languages are still in developing stages, or individuals who acquired American Sign Language at a later age, foreign-born Deaf individuals, Deaf-Blind individuals, a native Deaf signer in a highly stressful or emotional situation.
As is common in any spoken language interpreting, most individuals typically are at ease when they can listen to their native tongue as opposed to an interpreter working into their second language, which may be accented by one’s native language. The same principle applies to utilizing a CDI. Often, Deaf individuals may feel more at ease when one has a Deaf interpreter providing the interpretation in his/her native language without English intrusion.
Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI) is one of the certificates provided by the Registry of the Interpreters for the Deaf, INC (RID). A person who possess the certificate has passed both knowledge and performance portion of the exam and is required to be a Deaf individual.