All persons living or working in Australia have the right to communicate and engage with the Australian Government and other essential services, irrespective of their first language preference, their English language ability or their cultural and linguistic backgrounds. However, some members of Australia’s culturally and linguistically diverse communities may experience a language barrier when accessing government and other essential services. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2016 Census, more than 660, 000 people born overseas self-reported as having limited English proficiency.
Language services are designed to help ensure that people with limited or no English language proficiency can access the services and programs they need. Language services can include:
- engaging a credentialed interpreter either in person, via telephone or video conference
- translation of government documents from English into community languages
- translation of personal documents from a language other than English
- assistance from a bilingual staff member (who has received appropriate training)
- information on web sites translated into community languages
- multilingual telephone information
- multimedia resources and other digital media in languages other than English.
The appropriate language service depends on the situation. Many Australian Government departments and agencies have language services policies and procedures to guide staff in determining when and what type of assistance to provide.
Free Interpreting Service
Did you know that the Free Interpreting Service aims to provide equitable access to key services for people with limited or no English language proficiency. Using credentialed interpreters can facilitate better access to essential services for these clients and is particularly important for conversations in technical, legal or health contexts.
Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) National
The Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) is also a language service provider managed by the Department of Home Affairs. TIS National provides interpreters for people with limited or no English language proficiency and for agencies and businesses that need to communicate with them. TIS National provides immediate telephone interpreting 24 hours a day, and an on-site interpreting service. The Department of Social Services engages TIS National to deliver the Free Interpreting Service.
Free Translating Service
The Free Translating Service is provided for people settling permanently in Australia, to support participation in employment, education and community engagement. Permanent residents and select temporary or provisional visa holders are able to have up to ten eligible documents translated, into English, within the first two years of their eligible visa grant date. Applications for the Free Translating Service are made on the Free Translating Service website. The website is easy to use and is available in English, Arabic, Farsi and Simplified Chinese.
Our Registered Migration Agents at Migration Centre of Australia have been in the migration industry for many years and have helped thousands of clients onshore and offshore. We are trained professionals in Australian Migration Law and we are trusted providers in the industry for our services. If you want to know more about accessing free language services in Australia, whether it is through an interpreter or translation service, or even organizing an English language class, contact us today on (02) 4626 1002 or send us an email at email@example.com and one of my registered migration agents will be ready to help you.