Edited by Hilde Haualand, Maartje De Meulder and Jemina Napier
[Translation and Interpreting Studies 17:3] 2022
► pp. 406–428
Globally, deaf associations and sign language interpreters’ organizations support the idea that interpreting services are equivalent to access and inclusion for deaf people. Researchers have challenged this assumption by pointing to ‘the illusion of inclusion’ (Russell 2007; Russell and Winston 2014; De Meulder and Haualand 2021), the ‘institution of access’ (Brunson 2011), and the fact that interpreters are needed but not wanted (Pöchhacker 2019; Sheneman 2020). This article explores whether sign language interpreting services are the ideal solution when providing access to communication, information, and services for deaf signers. It presents the perspectives of three deaf employees of the Flemish deaf association and four hearing Dutch–VGT (Flemish Sign Language) interpreters on what constitutes their ‘ideal’ world. By addressing this topic, interviewees considered whether in this ideal world sign language interpreting services would still exist and expressed their views on topics such as communication, access, (in)equity, and inclusion.