Finland has a population of 5.3 million people of which are 5000 deaf people. There is a Finnish Association of the Deaf (FAD), founded in 1905. The offices of the WFD president and general secretary are located in Helsinki. There is also an interpreter association (SVT).
Since last year we now have a new structure in interpreting services for deaf people. Now the government is responsible for the services and the payment. Regardless where the service users live in Finland, the services are now all the same.
There are two postgraduate master programmes in sign language interpreting with a total of 90 credits. In addition, the European Master in Sign Language Interpreting (EUMASLI) is also run by one of the programmes in Finland.
The challenges for SVT are to become a member of EULITA and to have close cooperation with the different administrative bodies so there is no decline in the quality of the services. In addition, we will liase with the trainings because changes are about to take place in the curriculum.