Cintra Language Services Group, a leading provider of language services for the UK Public Sector, has been the first organisation to achieve certification against the new legal interpreting standard ISO 20228.
The standard, introduced in April this year, sets out to establish best practices for the management and delivery of interpretation services in legal settings, it also outlines minimum qualifications and competencies required for legal interpreters. These include domain-specific knowledge in the legal field as well as linguistic, interpreting, intercultural, interpersonal, and technical skills.
The committee tasked with producing this standard identified that “current trends in several countries go in the direction of de-professionalism due to shortage of financial means, absence of specialized training and lack of awareness of the risks of using non-professional legal interpreters.” In publishing this standard, the committee intended to reverse this trend.
Cintra’s Head of Sales and Marketing, Ben Ablett, said “By being the first to adopt this standard we hope to further strengthen the trust our clients already place in us but we also hope that our certification will encourage other providers to do the same. Cintra has long held the firm belief that upholding standards in the industry is essential, not only for our own success and that of our clients and interpreters but also for ensuring the fair and equal access to public services for all.”
Cintra’s certification was supported by the Association of Translation Companies (ATC), the first organisation in the UK to offer certification services to ISO 20228. Raisa McNab, CEO of the ATC said ‘Certification to ISO standards is a meaningful way for language service companies to demonstrate their compliance to best practice, and to indicate their compliance to strict qualification and competence criteria for linguists. Early adopters like Cintra Language Services pave the way for others to follow.”
Although still relatively new, Cintra have already seen compliance with this standard included as a contractual requirement from clients. This would suggest the UK Public Sector is already aware of the importance of this standard and with renewal of the country’s biggest language services framework coming in the new year the industry could well see ISO 20228 make its first framework appearance.