Queenslanders who rely on interpreters to access essential services will soon have greater assistance with the Palaszczuk Government providing $740,000 over three years to boost the number of Interpreters who are certified by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).
Working in collaboration with NAATI, an Interpreter Training Boost Program will be launched in 2021 to support people who speak in-demand languages by assisting with their interpreter training and NAATI certification fees.
Minister for Employment, Training and Skills Dianne Farmer said the funding had the potential to kickstart vital careers.
“We are providing opportunities for up to 100 Queenslanders to gain jobs in the interpreting industry and this investment will ensure Queenslanders have the skills they need to set up employment pathways for the future,” Ms Farmer said.
Multicultural Affairs Minister Leanne Linard said there were more than 180 overseas languages spoken in Queensland and the COVID-19 pandemic had shown an urgent need for interpreters in some languages to help Queenslanders access essential services in the event of future disasters.
“Qualified interpreters are a life-line for those who may find it difficult communicating in English, as we found during the pandemic, and we need more of them, across a wide range of languages,” she said.
“They play a vital role in some of life’s most important and sometimes stressful moments – like visiting the doctor and getting a COVID-19 test, obtaining assistance during hailstorms, bushfires and cyclones. Their work is also crucial for English speaking professionals seeking to provide best care and services.”