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Monday, 08 August 2011 14:23

Professional interpreters against GB MoJ outsourcing

Colleagues are encouraged to consider signing a petition initiated by professional interpreters in the UK, even if they are not a NRPSI/DPSI/legal interpreter. The issue they are campaigning against will affect both the profession and the discipline worldwide in the future. But see disclaimer, below, from Applied Language Solutions.


For those who are residents and/or citizens of the UK, there is now a petition on the govt's own website which has been set up by Dr Zuzana Windle. If these criteria of residency and/or citizenship apply to you, you might like to sign that petition at:


Further updates at end of page, added 27 August 2011.

The agency in question is Applied Language Solutions. For details of ASL 'non-negotiable' new payment rates for interpreters, click here.


Petition reads:


We, the professional interpreters of the National Register of Public Service interpreters (UK), are against the Ministry of Justice's outsourcing of interpreting and translation services, all in the name of savings. Awarding a contract to a single, private, commercial agency will not bring about savings. This same agency will be the regulator and examine the interpreters. No public service profession is governed by a commercial agency. Justice will not be served by this course of action.


Communication Received from Applied Language Solutions, 8 August 2011:


"The following wording is factually inaccurate and can therefore be considered to be defamatory.  We ask that you consider removing this from your website until the wording on the petition is changed.

"Awarding a contract to a single, private, commercial agency will not bring about savings. This same agency will be the regulator and examine the interpreters."

Applied Language Solutions will provide significant savings to the MoJ so this statement is not true. It has also been widely communicated that Applied Language Solutions will not be examining or rating the performance, following assessment, of ANY interpreter so this is not factual."


For further information on this issue, see


MoJ's decision


Background information



Further message received 26 August 2011

Subject: Fwd: Please sign this petition: support interpreters!
Date: Thu, 25 Aug 2011 22:39:17 +0000


Please sign this petition! THANK YOU!

E-petition on HM Government website

I am writing to you in order to ask for the signatures of you and your colleagues and friends in support of a petition against the MOJ outsourcing interpreting and translation services to a private sector provider (an agency). There is fierce opposition to this and a large section of the register currently used, the National Register of Public Service Interpreters (NRPSI), will not work under the new arrangements.


Do not outsource interpreting and translation in the justice sector

We, the undersigned, petition the Ministry of Justice not to outsource the provision of interpreters and translators in the justice sector to a single commercial agency. In particular, we request that:

1. The National Agreement be preserved and made mandatory.

2. All interpreters working in the justice sector must be registered on the National Register of Public Service Interpreters.

3. The Ministry of Justice engages in a meaningful consultation with the interpreting profession to enable efficiency savings to take place.

4. The Ministry of Justice considers the adverse impact the contract with the preferred supplier is likely to have on ethnic minorities and on foreign-language speakers.

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