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How To Request An Interpreter:

Before You Begin, Ask Yourself:


1) What do I need to provide?

          When requesting an ASL

interpreter, the more information you

provide will make it easier for us to

begin the request process. In your

initial request, please include the

time, date, topic, budget capabilities,

and any other relevant information.

Please also specify whether the

event is in person or being held virtually. When possible, providing prep materials such as speeches, PowerPoint Presentations, song lyrics, schedules, speaker names, etc. will help our interpreters successfully convey the message. 

          Events longer than 30 minutes will typically require a team of 2 interpreters, depending on the situation. Interpreting is both physically and mentally exhausting, so to keep the message clear and our team of interpreters healthy and safe, we primarily will schedule teams of 2 or more.


2) What can I / my organization afford?

          Fingers Crossed started in the streets and we will always keep the same anti-Capitalist approach of providing Pro Bono Interpreting services for protests, actions, front-line activism, community events, and more. For other events, our interpreters can be hired as Independent contractors. Industry rates for interpreters can vary depending on job type, but average rates for professional, qualified ASL Interpreters is $50/hr per interpreter. If this is not within your organization's financial means, our interpreters are always willing to negotiate rates. Our interpreters are committed to providing accessibility at a rate that is most empowering and appropriate for everyone. 


Accessibility ALWAYS comes first.

**Please be sure consider accessibility when building budgets and securing funding. This helps promote interpreting as a respected career and also makes it easier to secure services when needed!**


The role of an interpreter is to judiciously and neutrally facilitate the unedited communication between Hearing Individuals and Deaf, Hard of Hearing, DeafBlind, and others needing ASL as a part of their accessibility as clearly as possible. Interpreters must always respect the original intent, cultural dynamics, linguistic nuances, and confidentiality of all parties.




*Privacy and confidentiality are top priorities for Fingers Crossed Interpreting. Certain apps such as Facebook Messenger and FaceTime can require the exchange of personal information such as phone number, email, and social media account information. Please note that Fingers Crossed Interpreting Interpreters are expected to remove personal information as necessary from their devices and records and are not to use these or any other methods to contact any individual outside of the context of the interpreting situation. For any questions, comments, or concerns please contact Andrew Tolman at


**These capabilities, while always available upon request, are specifically being shared due to the current situation globally surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. With a shortage of in-person interpreting as an option, ASL Interpreters are working closely with the DHHDBD+ community to develop creative solutions to face the shortage head-on and fill in as many access gaps as possible. In more stable global conditions, Fingers Crossed Interpreting adamantly advocates for prioritizing individual access needs that often include in-person Interpreters, consistent use of Deaf Interpreters as part of the interpreting team, accurate live captioning, and other standard business costs, rates, and practices. Our current limits do not fully reflect the overall mission of FCI, and we appreciate your patience, understanding, and flexibility. 

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Fingers Crossed Interpreting (FCI) remains committed to supporting the DHHDBD+ and ASL using communities in Portland (OR), Bend (OR), Salem (OR), Vancouver (WA), and surrounding areas. Currently, most of our community is practicing social distancing in accordance with CDC Suggestions and Mandates. However, we remain vigilant about creative solutions to access needs at this time while still respecting and prioritizing the health of all we work with. We also acknowledge that many people still have work and other life obligations that require access. As always, FCI prioritizes access and inclusion and is proud to offer qualified, community-backed ASL Interpreters for sliding scale and pro bono rates. At this time, some requests for live ASL Interpretation at non-essential events are still considered a health hazard and are therefore accepted by the discretion of interpreters and considered on a case by case basis. That being said, when available and where appropriate, FCI Interpreters can be individually available for video remote/relay interpreting via apps such as Skype, Blue Jeans, Zoom, FaceTime*, and Facebook Messenger* for a number of non-essential, community-based live situations** including, but not limited to:


  • AA / NA Meetings

  • Religious services, meetings, and classes

  • Health activities such as yoga or other guided workouts and meditations 

  • Educational workshops or VLOGs

  • Online work trainings, meetings, and updates 

  • Online entertainment or art such as Drag shows, tarot and astrology sessions, book or poetry readings, etc. 

  • Political events, press conferences, announcements (written or verbal) where interpreters are not present.

  • Interactions at the store, bank or financial institution, veterinarian, car service, food bank, tax preparer, or in other public spaces where crucial information is needed and VRI or other remote Interpreter Apps are not available.


Please note that currently, reliably accurate live captioning is not readily available. However, Fingers Crossed Interpreting is working diligently with community partners to develop ways to bring live captioning services to the public for these and other situations. We apologize for the gap in total access and appreciate your patience while options are being explored. 


To obtain an interpreter for medical, legal, emergency services, or social services of any kind please contact:


Signing Resources and Interpreters

(877) 512-2246

Access Services Northwest

(503) 447-5000

Page Background Image Description - Blue tinted picture of performer and Interpreter at ICE Building in Portland, OR. The interpreter is pictured from below with hands in the air, tarps behind them, and a building in the background behind the performer who is singing into a microphone and wearing a low hat.

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