Officials in Manatee County, Florida have come under fire recently after utilizing a sign language interpreter that warned residents not of the potential damage from Hurricane Irma, but of “bears,” “monsters,” and “pizza.” Specifically, one of the phrases the interpreter used was, “help you at that time to use bear big.”
Apparently, the interpreter, Marshall Greene is not 100% fluent in American Sign Language. Apparently, he has a brother who is deaf, so he can get by conversationally it seems, but it probably wasn’t the best idea for Manatee County officials to trust in someone with only a minute understanding of the language to relay such important information.
Someone took the time to add captions to video of Greene’s signings. Do you think the deaf community was effectively able to keep safe after seeing this information?
The county typically uses interpreters from VisCom, a professional sign language interpreting service, but for whatever reason did not contact them for this interpretation.