P2P will make attempts to remove barriers caused by language, by offering translating and interpreting services where required or requested.  Please advise personnel if the ethnicity and gender of the interpreter is relevant when accessing these services.

Choosing an interpreter:

If the interpreter is known to the participant,  this could significantly inhibit or otherwise compromise the interaction. Whilst children often become proficient in English more quickly that their parent, it is not always appropriate for them to act as interpreters. Similarly, the use of family friends and other relatives should be avoided to maintain privacy.

The need for an interpreter may not always be obvious. Some people may be able to converse at a basic level in English but not necessarily fully understand the language used by professionals. If there is any doubt about your ability to fully comprehend what is being communicated, please request the services of an interpreter.


P2P suggest the following guidelines for personnel when working with interpreters. Please advise personnel of any other tactic or information, to ensure the best possible outcome for all involved:

  • brief the interpreter beforehand wherever possible, explaining the purpose of the meeting;
  • allow for the extra time that is likely to be needed when using an interpreter;
  • introduce yourself and the interpreter to the participant, and explain clearly who you are and what your role is;
  • speak directly to the participant rather than addressing them through the interpreter, and look at them when speaking and listening to them;
  • maintain control of the meeting;
  • pause often to allow the interpreter to speak;
  • speak clearly and somewhat more slowly, but not loudly;
  • avoid using slang or technical jargon;
  • make sure that the interpreter understands any difficult concepts that you are trying to convey
  • periodically check on the participant’s understanding of what has been said by asking them, through the interpreter, to repeat in their own words what has been communicated


On site face to face interpreting has the benefit of allowing for visual and nonverbal cues. It is best if the same interpreter can be requested and used as continuity facilitates the best communication.

Therefore, if an accredited interpreter or a translator with knowledge of a particular language is not available, it will be necessary to decide whether to attempt to reschedule a meeting, or attempt to obtain an interpreter by phone, or use an interpreter that is not accredited.

Where possible, translators and interpreters who are accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) will be sourced.


P2P staff are able to contact organisations that specialise in people with a disability from CALD groups, to obtain resources about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in multiple languages. These organisations provide important links between families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and the NDIS.

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