Deaf community outraged over Hurricane Irma interpreter

Deaf community outraged after interpreter signs gibberish during Irma press conference news Petty Interpreter

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But they definitely didn't need to worry about pizza, bears, or monsters, despite what deaf and hard of hearing residents were warned by a sign language interpreter working for Manatee County during a press conference on the incoming storm.

A video of the conference, which translates what he actually said, has gone viral, having been watched almost 400,000 times.

A sign language interpreter hired for a Hurricane Irma briefing is being criticized for reportedly signing warnings about "pizza" and "monsters" rather than translating officials' remarks.

Critics said Manatee County put people in danger when they put Greene up to the task.

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A sign language interpreter has been accused of being a phony after taking the stage during a Hurricane Irma news conference.

"When he started signing, I was totally shocked", Charlene McCarthy said.

The county chose to not use an interpreter from VisCom, a professional sign language interpreting service, as it usually does.

The operator of a company that provides deaf interpreters to Manatee County told WPTV that it was "horribly unnerving" for her to watch the press conference. She said she was horrified when she saw the broadcast.

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Azzara told the paper that the county has requested an interpreter and public information assistance from the state of Florida. But she claims no one from the county ever called her.

So, now the question is - why wasn't someone called in who was a certified interpreter?

Instead, she said, members of the county's deaf community were left having to rely on relatives who could hear, or texted friends and family to try to get updates on what was happening as Hurricane Irma struck Florida. The interpreter's family said he was asked by his bosses to step in and help during a crucial time.

Officials have admitted they made a mistake, while the area's deaf community has called on them to apologise.

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