Deaf Action Center of Louisiana

AccessAmerica Video Remote Interpreting

The AccessAmerica Video Remote Interpreting project plans to install 81 new videoconferencing stations, and enhance the user experience at 19 existing stations that serve individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing in Northwest Louisiana, and sites in Alabama, California, and Texas. The project intends to use broadband and videoconference technology to provide on-demand, cost-effective sign language interpretation at a total of 100 community partner sites, including community anchor institutions such as hospitals, courts, public safety agencies, shelters, schools, and libraries. Each state-of-the-art video conferencing unit is expected to connect to trained American Sign Language interpreters working at a central call center or otherwise remotely.

Total Award: 
$1,380,513
BTOP In Action
An interpreter signs on camera at a studio at the Deaf Action Center.

The Deaf Action Center of Louisiana installed new videoconferencing stations and enhanced the user experience in Northwest Louisiana, as well as communities in Alabama, California, and Texas. Serving individuals that are deaf or hard-of-hearing, the project deployed more than 90 workstations and provided more than 5,700 hours of training.

Remote video interpreting enabled individuals that are deaf or hard-of-hearing to access sign language interpreting services. The state-of-the-art videoconferencing units were installed in courts, hospitals, and libraries, and the units linked to American Sign Language interpreters at Deaf Action Center’s offices. Using these interpreters to facilitate communication remotely saves the cost of mileage and travel time. The workstations are available 24 hours per day, and individuals can use them to access educational, legal, and business resources.

The Deaf Action Center also provided job skills training for people with hearing impairments and training for employers of workers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. Continuing education instruction was available live and on demand for sign-language interpreters. Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu stated, “Enhancing these services will allow the Deaf Action Center to improve delivery of health care information, legal services, job training, and education to people who are deaf by offering low-cost interpretation services. The funds will provide our hearing disabled citizens with job opportunities that might not have previously been available to them.”

Reports and Documents
Award Documents

BTOP in Action

Two students use loaner laptops at one of the project’s upgraded centers City of Milwaukee

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