Module 10
Language Access: Interpreters in Adult Victim Sexual Assault Cases


Many people in our society, including many navigating the criminal justice system, require support to communicate effectively due to limited English proficiency or hearing/vision impairments. Without adequate support to communicate effectively, victims face a barrier to accessing justice. As explained in Modules 2 and 3, the criminal justice system is complex. Victims navigating that system must be able to communicate with all those within the system in a way that works for each individual victim. Victims must be able to communicate in a manner that ensures they understand the information they receive about the criminal justice process and in a manner in which they are best able to relay information about their victimization. Effective communication is essential to law enforcement’s ability to thoroughly investigate a crime and to the prosecution’s ability to accurately assess and present the evidence.

This module will:

  • Explain the importance of skilled language interpretation at every stage of the criminal justice system;
  • Raise awareness of the issues unique to interpreting a sexual assault case and how to identify whether victims are communicating clearly with criminal justice professionals;
  • Explain who is responsible for securing interpretation services at each stage; and
  • Explain a victim advocate’s role in ensuring that a sexual assault victim can effectively communicate throughout the criminal justice process.

This module will be available to you as soon as you complete Module 1. To complete a module, you must read each of the lessons and complete the review quiz at the end.

It is important to finish Module 1 so that you have sufficient context for the rest of the program. After that, you'll have full access to jump between lessons however works best for you.

Tip: In the left sidebar, you'll notice a vertical bar of squares. Each square represents a lesson in that module. You can see at a glance which lessons you've done (brightly colored) and which ones you have not (gray).

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