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FEMA contract helps storm victims with hearing loss

Published 12:56pm Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Huntsville’s Foreign Language Services was recently awarded an open-ended interpreting contract with Alabama’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide American Sign Language interpreters to people who have lost property in the recent tornados.

The contract, which targets home and business owners with hearing losses, will open the lines of communication between the hearing impaired and FEMA inspectors, as well as contractors who are aiding them with rebuilding and the cleanup of homes and businesses in Chilton, Jefferson and Perry counties in Alabama – the counties that suffered the most damage in the last round of tornados.

The six-month contract gives FEMA an easy mechanism for approaching FLS for ASL services on an as-needed basis.

Providing ASL services is the newest of FLS’ interpreting and translation ventures and a natural offshoot from their foreign language interpreting services. It is also an answer to growing requests from FLS’ customer base.

FLS has already developed an extensive network of ASL interpreters, as well as customers in Alabama and in other states, requesting help communicating with the hearing impaired.

All of FLS’ contract ASL interpreters have the appropriate licensure, degrees and experience in their field. They are accessible to businesses and individuals in need.

FLS was also recently awarded a statewide DHR translation contract that includes providing face-to-face interpreting services in American Sign Language. Claudia Coker is also the project manager for both the DHR and FLS contracts.

Foreign Language Services is breaking through the language barrier by providing technical translation and interpretation services to customers in more than 80 languages.

For more information, visit or contact Caroline Myers at (256) 881-1120.

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