Yesterday, Assembly Bill (AB) 589, authored by State Senator Patrick Testin (R-Stevens Point), Representatives Jonathan Brostoff (D-Milwaukee), Joel Kleefisch (R- Oconomowoc), and Ken Skowronski (R-Franklin) received a public hearing in the Assembly Committee on Jobs and the Economy. AB 589 would restructure the current system for licensing sign language interpreters to create qualification levels and allow more interpreters to gain employment faster while providing consumer protections. It will also create the Sign Language Interpreter’s Examining Board in order to periodically identify if updates are needed. More than 50 supporters of the bill from across the state traveled to the Capitol to testify in favor of the bill including a group of 17 UW-Milwaukee Interpreter Training students directly affected by it. More Wisconsinites sent written testimony ahead of the hearing and 32 registered in support. Three hundred people were tuned in online.
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