Interpreters emerging as TNG-CWA focus

LONG BEACH _ Interpreters are emerging as one of the focal points for the future of The Newspaper Guild-Communications Workers of America, officials from CFI’s parent union said during the Western District Council meeting this weekend.

To better focus on that growing membership contingent, the union plans to create an organizing institute specific to interpreter activists and build a national hub for advocacy, training and community building among language service professionals, TNG President Bernie Lunzer said.

“It’s important that we have interpreters within our sector,” Lunzer said during the Western District Council meeting hosted by the Pacific Media Workers Guild.

CFI President Mike Ferreira discusses the state of interpreters in California during the Western District Regional Council meeting.

TNG-CWA already represents medical interpreters in Minnesota and court interpreters in Cook County along with more than 900 members from the California Federation of Interpreters. In fact, interpreters account for the largest unit of the Pacific Media Workers Guild.

There’s also room to grow. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects employment of interpreters and translators to increase faster than other occupations.

CFI President Michael Ferreira, Southern California Vice President Rebeca Vera and staff representatives attended the meeting and forged connections with Grace Catania, chair of the court interpreters unit from the Chicago Newspaper Guild  and Santiago Morgan, chair of the medical interpreters unit from the Minnesota Newspapers and Communications Guild.

Polish interpreter Grace Catania, chair of the Chicago Guild’s interpreter unit, explains upcoming bargaining concerns for Cook County court interpreters as Chicago Guild president David Pollard listens.
Spanish interpreter Santiago Morgan, chair of the interpreter unit at the Minnesota Newspapers and Communications Guild, discusses bargaining with the Hennepin County Medical Center.
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Pacific Media Workers Guild

We are the Pacific Media Workers Guild, Local 39521 of The Newspaper Guild-Communications Workers of America. We represent more than 1,200 journalists and other media workers, interpreters, translators, union staffs and freelancers.

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