IM this article to a friend!

December 8, 2005

CSDVRS Launches Sign Language to Spanish Service

From: CSD Video Relay - Dec 8, 2005

Release Date: November 18, 2005
[English & Espanol]
CSDVRS Launches Sign Language to Spanish Service

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – 18 November 2005 – On Nov. 1, CSD Video Relay Service (CSDVRS) launched several product enhancements, including one that allows deaf and hard of hearing sign language users to place telephone calls to Spanish-speaking hearing people.

CSDVRS allows sign language users to call hearing people by communicating with them through an online video interpreter via a high speed Internet connection. With Spanish CSDVRS, the deaf or hard of hearing caller communicates with the video interpreter, who translates the American Sign Language or signed English into spoken Spanish and vice versa. There is no charge for using this service.

“Most parents of deaf Hispanic/Latino Americans are hearing, and many do not speak English or use sign language, so communication is often limited,” said Leticia Arellano from Latino Deaf and Hard of Hearing of Metropolitan Washington. “Spanish CSDVRS will bridge the gap between a sign language user and family members who speak in Spanish. This is a great opportunity for many deaf Hispanic sign language users to have conversations with hearing family members!”

Marta Ordaz, acting director of client support services at the Deaf Counseling, Advocacy and Referral Agency in San Leandro, Calif., agrees that deaf Hispanic clients will benefit from using Spanish CSDVRS by allowing them to communicate more frequently with their family members. Her agency even has public VRS stations where clients can make calls.

“With Spanish CSDVRS, I am now able to call my parents and have the opportunity to discuss anything with them,” said Sonia Garcia of Albuquerque, N.M. “I grew up using English and sign language and know only a little Spanish. Being able to use Spanish CSDVRS to talk with my family and relatives in sign language and having the video interpreter translate into spoken Spanish is a fantastic service!”

The 41.3 million people who make up the growing Hispanic population have become the U.S.’s largest ethnic minority. California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, Arizona, New Jersey and New Mexico are all examples of states having large Hispanic populations, and many prefer to speak Spanish.

Spanish CSDVRS is available from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST, Monday through Friday. To use the service, videophone users can connect through Web cam users should go to and select “Spanish.” Hearing Hispanic callers can call deaf sign language users toll-free at 866-WANT-VRS (1-866-926-8877), selecting the “Spanish” option.

Spanish CSDVRS is part of CSD’s “Switch to CSDVRS” promotional plan. For more information on the enhanced CSDVRS features launched on Nov. 1, visit

About CSD
CSD is a private, nonprofit telecommunications and human services organization based in Sioux Falls, S.D. In its 30-year history, CSD has expanded its communication service offerings and currently manages over 20 call centers in the U.S. CSD was the first deaf company to operate a video relay service, and the company also offers telecommunications relay services, equipment distribution programs and sign language interpreting services. Additionally, CSD’s National Programs provide human services in 15 locations in eight states. For more information, see

[English & Espanol]