The glass ceiling again…..

I am helping out a friend of mine who asked for advice and I asked if it is ok to put it out in the blogosphere and see what advice it can comes up with….

Hi folks, sorry to bother you but I am helping out a deaf colleague of mine whose first language is BSL..  She is keen to take the promotion test but would require a BSL interpreter to interpret the test for her as the questions/tasks are pretty much heavily worded in complicated political English.  The HR department have refused to allow her to have an interpreter – see their words below:-

I am happy for you to sit the test, but I’m afraid that as the tasks specifically require an individual to read and interpret English in the written form, translation into sign language would not be appropriate.

This would be unreasonable on the grounds that it specifically changes the nature of the test which is for the candidates to evaluate the logic of various kinds of arguments in the written form and also draw conclusions from graphical and tabular data.

I am surprised at the attitude shown by HR.  I recall that some of you had interpreters for your exams etc when you were at college/university?  How did you manage that and what arguments did you use?  Do you have any suggested wordings (reasonable please!).

I really want to support this lady as I feel she deserves support and not be brushed off which seems to be happening at the moment.  She’s thinking of giving it up which I think is a huge shame.