Police must cater for deaf: Mthethwa

Johannesburg - The SA Police Service needs to employ sign language interpreters, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa said on Tuesday.

“We need to have police stations which employ sign language interpreters... to ensure that all members of society are catered for,” he stated.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. File photo: Oupa Mokoena. Credit: INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

“This should be a service which upholds and protects the fundamental rights of citizens, and executes its mandate in accordance with the Constitution.”

According to Mthethwa, police relied on external-registered interpreters who were called to stations when needed.

The police's disability management branch was now working on improving services for disabled victims.

“When victims report crimes, they must not be compromised through wrong interpretation and badly-written statements, as well as misunderstanding of their experiences.”

Mthethwa said better service, well-trained police officers, and improved statement writing at police stations could lead to more criminal convictions. - Sapa