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Meet the man providing vital information to the deaf community during bushfires

Natalie Peters & Erin Molan
Article image for Meet the man providing vital information to the deaf community during bushfires

Image: ABC

Over the last few weeks, Auslan interpreter Sean Sweeney has become a regular sight on our TV screens.

As the NSW Rural Fire Service’s Auslan (Australian sign language) interpreter, Mr Sweeney has spent countless hours bringing life-saving bushfire updates to the deaf community.

He tells Natalie Peters and Erin Molan about his personal story, and how he came to be an interpreter.

“My whole family is deaf. My parents, my grandparents, my great-grandparents and other relatives within the family… sign language for me is my first language.

“In my mid-thirties I decided to become an interpreter, and then I had to learn how to interpret the language, which is another skill on its own.”

He also describes the preparation that goes into making sure he’s getting the most important information to the deaf community.

“When you’re saving lives, you’ve just got to work harder to make sure you’re doing a proper job.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview

 

Natalie Peters & Erin Molan
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