Cuomo must use sign language interpreter at COVID-19 briefings, judge rules

Maya Rajamani
May 12, 2020 - 12:53 pm

    NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- A federal judge has ruled in favor of four deaf New York residents who sued Gov. Andrew Cuomo for failing to include a sign language interpreter at his daily COVID-19 briefings, according to a report.

    In a ruling dated Monday, Judge Valerie Caproni said the governor must “immediately implement in-frame ASL interpretation during his daily press briefings,” the New York Post reported

    Cuomo’s team is working to resolve some “technical issues,” but plans to start having in-frame ASL interpretation on Wednesday, the outlet reported. 

    The four New Yorkers and the nonprofit Disability Rights New York hit Cuomo with a lawsuit last month claiming he has been violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by failing to include interpretation, according to the outlet. 

    Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi previously told the outlet the briefings already included “a dedicated ALS stream that’s available on our website,” adding that “all conferences have been close-captioned.” 

    “We’ll review the suit, but we’ve been moving heaven and Earth working with the Albany press corps to reduce density in the room and respect social distancing standards as we fight this pandemic,” he added at the time.