RULE 11.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE OF INTERPRETER COMMISSION (a) Purpose and Scope. This rule establishes the Interpreter Commission ("Commission") and prescribes the conditions of its activities. This rule does not modify or duplicate the statutory process directing the Court Certified Interpreter Program as it is administered by the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) (RCW 2.43). The Interpreter Commission will develop policies for the Interpreter Program and the Program Policy Manual, published on the Washington Court's website at www.courts.wa.gov, which shall constitute the official version of policies governing the Court Certified Interpreter Program. (b) Jurisdiction and Powers. All certified court interpreters who are certified in the state of Washington by AOC are subject to rules and regulations specified in the Interpreter Program Manual. The Commission shall establish three committees to fulfill ongoing functions related to issues, discipline, and judicial/court administration education. Each committee shall consist of three Commission members and one member shall be identified as the chair. (1) The Issues Committee is assigned issues, complaints, and/or requests from interpreters for review and response. If the situation cannot be resolved at the Issues Committee level, the matter will be submitted by written referral to the Disciplinary Committee. (2) The Disciplinary Committee has the authority to decertify and deny certification of interpreters based on the disciplinary procedures for: (a) violations of continuing education/court hour requirements, (b) failure to comply with Interpreter Code of Conduct (GR 11.2) or professional standards, or (3) violations of law that may interfere with their duties as a certified court interpreter. The Disciplinary Committee will decide on appeal any issues submitted by the Issues Committee. (3) The Judicial and Court Administration Education Committee shall provide ongoing opportunities for training and resources to judicial officers and court administrators related to court interpretation improvement. (c) Establishment. The Supreme Court shall appoint members to the Interpreter Commission. The Supreme Court shall designate the chair of the Commission. The Commission shall include representatives from the following areas of expertise: judicial officers from the appellate and each trial court level (3), interpreter (2), court administrator (1), attorney (1), public member (2), representative from ethnic organization (1), and AOC representative (1). The term for a member of the Commission shall be three years. Members are eligible to serve a subsequent 3 year term. The Commission shall consist of eleven members. Members shall only serve on one committee and committees may be supplemented by ad hoc professionals as designated by the chair. Ad hoc members may not serve as the chair of a committee. (d) Regulations. Policies outlining rules and regulations directing the interpreter program are specified in the Interpreter Program Manual. The Commission, through the Issues Committee and Disciplinary Committee, shall enforce the policies of the interpreter program. Interpreter program policies may be modified at any time by the Commission and AOC. (e) Existing Law Unchanged. This rule shall not expand, narrow, or otherwise affect existing law, including but not limited to RCW chapter 2.43. (f) Meetings. The Commission shall hold meetings as determined necessary by the chair. Meetings of the Commission are open to the public except for executive sessions and disciplinary meetings related to action against a certified interpreter. (g) Immunity from Liability. No cause of action against the Commission, its standing members or ad hoc members appointed by the Commission, shall accrue in favor of a certified court interpreter or any other person arising from any act taken pursuant to this rule, provided that the Commission members or ad hoc members acted in good faith. The burden of proving that the acts were not taken in good faith shall be on the party asserting it. [Adopted effective September 1, 2005]
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