2018-2020 Priorities

Delegates representing state association affiliates, eligible nonprofit organization affiliates and other groups voted on top priorities for 2018-2020 during the 54th Biennial NAD Conference in Hartford, Connecticut. Most are tied to the Vision 2020 Strategic Plan; the NAD Board of Directors is responsible for follow up action. Periodic reports on progress will be posted here.

The Official 2018-2020 Conference Top Priorities (5) are as follows (PDF available to download):

2018-2020 Priorities


The goals of this motion are threefold:

(1) bring the NAD-RID Code of Professional Conduct for sign language interpreters up to the expectations of the Deaf community; and

(2) establish a clear and public timeline for updating and restoring sign language interpreting certification programs, including the NIC, Ed K-12, SC:L, and CDI; and

(3) developing a position statement on the minimum standards for Federal, state, local and institution-wide regulations and policies.

Within three months, the NAD shall reach out to the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and share their intent to address the aforementioned issues, and invite a collaborative process.

By the next National Leadership Training Conference (NLTC), the NAD shall:

(1) identify community organizational partners and individuals to collaborate with in pursuing this priority; and

(2) create and widely distribute an ASL video and written white paper describing the reasons for pursuing this priority.

(3) create and widely distribute a timeline implementing strategies to achieve this priority.

Before the next NAD Conference, the NAD shall:

(1) pursue changes to an updated NAD-RID CPC and develop educational material for the Deaf community in ASL distributed via social media channels; and

(2) create and disseminate collateral that explains how to best collaborate with sign language interpreters in a positive and productive manner; and

(3) report on its progress in advocating for the restoration and updates of RID credentials that were offered prior to the moratorium; and

(4) publish its position statement on minimum standards for sign language interpreting on the NAD website along with supplemental information for state associations, non-profits, and other advocacy entities on the best strategies to support and implement these standards.


NAD shall create a task force on aging with DSA. The task force will gather and share information, analyze research and data, promote and publish on the website all the relevant information that will benefit everyone involved in elderly care including seniors, family, caretakers, retirement communities, medical practitioners and providers, and others. It is important for NAD to recognize all subsets of our population including youth, adults, and also our senior community.


To create a TaskForce to focus on working with Federal and State agencies in collecting data to ensure that service provision is clarified and maximized for Deaf individuals in respect to current Federal laws/regulations (e.g., Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, WIOA/Order Of Selection, OOS).


With appreciation to LEAD-K for engaging in community organizing to address language acquisition by young deaf children, we also need to focus our energies on a campaign that reaches out to and educates parents who first learn that their newborn child is deaf. A national campaign, in support of and in collaboration with state associations, is needed to recruit parents as allies to promote ASL and English as the primary languages of instruction with the understanding that equal consideration shall be given to the signed and spoken language(s) of the home- which will be another strategic prong in our fight to combat language deprivation.


The NAD shall collaborate with other organizations to create a campaign to:

(1) create awareness about the lack of communication access in interactions with police officers and throughout the justice system in the United States and the adverse impact such lack of communication access has on the Deaf community; and

(2) create awareness about the lack of communication access and possible US Constitutional violation of Amendment 8 related to cruel and unusual punishment in state and federal correctional facilities across the United States and the adverse impact such lack of communication access has on the Deaf community; and

(3) spotlight current, ongoing efforts to promote equal access to the justice system for the Deaf and hard of hearing; and

(4) take actions to combat the perception that the Americans with Disabilities Act and Rehabilitation Act do not apply to Deaf people who are serving a prison sentence; and

(5) create a national training for law enforcement on working with Deaf, Deaf Person of Color, DEAF LGBTQ+, DeafBlind, Deaf with other disabilities, underprivileged Deaf individuals, and other Deaf underrepresented groups.

Within six months of the conclusion of the NAD's Biennial Conference in Hartford ("Hartford"), the NAD shall identify community organizational partners and individuals to collaborate with in pursuing this priority, and shall begin developing the campaign.

Within one year of Hartford, the NAD and its collaborating community organizational partners and individuals shall launch the campaign to spotlight the oppression of Deaf people in the justice system.