The rest of the Commissioner’s Letter
Here’s the rest of the Commissioner’s letter from the other day. I was startled to see the fact in the following:
The current schedule for ASL interpreters has deaf jurors scheduled one each Monday from now until January 31, 2005. We can only schedule one (deaf juror) per week as there are a limited number of ASL interpreters available to us and if a deaf juror were empanelled, the interpreters would have to serve that juror on a trial and wouldn’t be available throughout the week.
Sacramento County, CA Jury Commissioner Letter
I had told a friend of mine, another attorney who has a profound hearing loss but is not technically deaf, about my recent and ongoing experience with the Sacramento County call to juror service. She decided to send an inquiry to the Commissioner to see why deaf people have to go and show up in the jury waiting room rather than going online to see if their juror pool number or go on the telephone and see if the pool number gets called in.
Before the actual trial began, the judge and attorneys let us know that there were notebooks and pens on our chairs so we could take notes during the trial. They said it was up to us as individuals if we wanted to take notes, that some people found it helpful, particularly when there are a number of witnesses present, to keep the different accounts of the story separate. If we didn’t want to take notes, that would be fine too. We always had the option of the court reporter reading back to us during trial or in the deliberation room.