Interpreters Code Of Ethics


  1. Confidentiality: Interpreters must treat all information acquired during the Interpretation as confidential. Information shall only be shared on a "need to know" basis with other employees and service providers to the extent permitted by law.
  2. Accuracy: Conveying the content and spirit of what is said - Interpreters must transmit the message in a thorough and faithful manner, giving consideration to linguistic variations in both languages and conveying the tone and spirit of the original message. A word-for-word interpretation may not convey the intended idea. The interpreter must determine the relevant concept and say it in language that is readily understandable and culturally appropriate to the listener. In addition, the interpreter will make every effort to assure that the client has understood questions, instructions and other information transmitted.
  3. Completeness: Conveying everything that is said - Interpreters must interpret everything that is said by all people in the interaction, without omitting, adding, condensing or changing anything. If the content to be interpreted might be perceived as offensive, insensitive or otherwise harmful to the dignity and well-being of the client, the interpreter should advise the providers of this before interpreting.
  4. Non-judgmental attitude about the content to be interpreted: An interpreter's function is to facilitate communication. Interpreters are not responsible for what is said by anyone for whom they are interpreting. Even if the interpreter disagrees with what is said, thinks it is wrong, a lie or even immoral, the interpreters must suspend judgment, make no comment, and interpret everything accurately.
  5. Client self-determination: The client may ask the interpreter for his or her opinion. When this happens, the interpreter may provide or restate information that will assist the client in making his or her own decision. The interpreter will not influence the opinion of clients by telling them what action to take.
  6. Attitude towards clients: The interpreter should strive to develop a relationship of trust and respect with the client by adopting a caring, attentive, yet discreet and impartial attitude toward the client, towards his or her question, concerns and needs. The interpreter shall treat each client equally, with dignity and respect, regardless of race, colour, gender, religion, nationality, political persuasion or life-style choice.