Interpreters, Interveners, and Support Service Providers

Kristi M. Probst, Ed. D. and Susanne Morrow, M.A., CI and CT

Supporting Individuals Who Are DeafBlind

Comparing the Roles and Responsibilities of Interpreters, Interveners and SSPs

Individuals who are DeafBlind interact with their environment in unique ways. To provide access to the environment and encourage empowerment, there is a need for trained professionals with a comprehensive skill set to meet the needs of individuals who are DeafBlind with varying life experiences. For this article, the focus will be on examining the roles of interpreters, interveners, and support service providers (SSPs).


Interpreters can anticipate working with individuals with varying degrees of vision and hearing loss throughout the course of their career. This variation will affect the mode of communication and preferred reception of the individual. Some DeafBlind people use tactile sign language that is received through a hand-under-hand method of communication. Additional tactile input is provided through various methods, such as Pro-Tactile (PT) and haptics (Edwards, 2014). Much advancement and comparative study is currently being conducted to indicate the grammatical differences between visual and Pro-Tactile ASL (PTASL).

If engaging in PT means of communicati