Franklin, U.S. — City officials today approved an ordinance to hire ASL translators and interpreters for local catcallers through a pilot program created to amplify equality between disabled and nondisabled citizens. After the final vote, whistles, kissy-face noises and heckles were heard in celebration of the decision. “I used to think that the Deaf broad on my bus was just ignoring me, but now I can learn how to properly get her attention,” said local catcaller Jason Derpiss. “My interpreter just taught me how to sign ‘nice ass!’ What a compliment, right?”
Local Deaf woman Cecilia Williams was uninspired when she heard the news. “When I protested for equal and equitable treatment, being objectified and harassed just like hearing women wasn’t on my list of priorities. At least the interpreters translate my clapbacks, so I guess I’d call that progress.”
The pilot program, CATCALL (City Access Translators Communicating Abusive & Lewd Language), is part of a multiphase effort to increase accessibility, equality and inclusion throughout the city over the next five years. “While we obviously cannot hire a translator for every single professional street harasser, we’re pleased that we’re able to sustain a ratio of 1 to 5 throughout the community as part of this innovative program,” said Councilor Chris Garcia.
The Franklin Association of the Deaf praised the decision but also filed a complaint with the council, citing a lack of interpreters and captions for both in-person and virtual attendees of city council meetings. A city official stated that such measures were not feasible at this time, but they reiterated the city’s commitment to accessibility and pinky-promised implementation of such measures if there’s extra room in the budget.