The code of ethics listed below are for professional Community Interpreters working in Canada, based on the National Standard Guide for Community Interpreting Services (NSGCIS), published by the Healthcare Interpretation Network.

Our visual language interpreters (American Sign Language, Deaf Interpreting) abide by the Code of Ethics published by the Association of Visual Language Interpreters of Canada (AVLIC), found at

Accuracy and fidelity

  • Render all messages in their entirety accurately, as faithfully as possible without addition, distortion, omission and embellishment of the meaning.
  • The interpreted sentence should have the same meaning and effect as the original sentence.


  • Information learned about clients and cases should not be disclosed to anyone outside the interpretation assignment. However, as an interpreter, if you come across information indicating that a person’s life or that a child’s safety may be in danger, you should report the situation to the Service Provider (SP) immediately. These are the two exceptions where confidentiality can be broken and the SP be informed.
  • In addition, you may debrief with MCIS Interpretation Services or Vendor Management staff members in confidence if you have any questions or concerns related to the assignment or to the parties involved.

Respect for persons

  • Respect all parties in the job.


  • Interpreters strive to remain free of preference or bias to any party involved.
  • Interpreters are not advocates or opponents to any party. Interpreters are to only interpret messages from the source language to target language and vice versa.

Maintain role boundaries

  • Strive to perform within professional boundaries. Refrain from personal involvement or invested emotions.
  • The interpreter cannot do anything outside of his/her role. This is to avoid any risks to the interpreter.


  • Interpreters are responsible for the quality of interpretation provided and accountable to all parties and organizations engaging in the service.


  • Be professional, assertive and ethical at all times.
  • The interpreter must constantly project a professional image. This includes verbal and non-verbal actions.

Continued competence

  • Commit yourself to lifelong learning in recognition that languages, individuals, society and services are constantly evolving. Competent interpreters will strive to maintain the delivery of quality interpretation.
  • Investing in courses in both English and the other language will broaden understanding of topics that may benefit your career.

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