Sign language interpreter who worked during Hurricane Barry named honorary sheriff

Sign language interpreter who worked during Hurricane Barry named honorary sheriff
From left to right: Paula Rodriguez, CEO of Deaf Focus, Ari Latino, and Sheriff Bobby Webre (Source: APSO)

ASCENSION PARISH, La. (WAFB) - The Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office has named a sign language interpreter who worked during Hurricane Barry to keep the public informed as honorary sheriff.

Sign language interpreter named honorary sheriff for working during Hurricane Barry

Sheriff Bobby Webre says Ari Latino help thousands of hearing impaired viewers stay safe by interpreting during press conferences as Hurricane Barry made landfall in Louisiana. Latino has been named Honorary Sheriff for the month of July.

The staff of Deaf Focus and APSO Command Staff
The staff of Deaf Focus and APSO Command Staff (Source: APSO)

“Ari is the definition of inspiration. He opened the eyes of a lot of people in Ascension Parish and around the world that it’s important to keep open communication with our deaf community and making sure they are fully informed. His energy and enthusiasm is just infectious. I am proud to honor this young man with a bright future ahead,” said Sheriff Webre.

APSO says Latino is a native signer who can speak more directly with a deaf audience because he’s able to sign in a more conversational way. He’s passionate about communicating with deaf people in times of emergency so they can know what’s going on, the sheriff says.

The sheriff’s office is also thanking Paula Rodriguez, the founder of Deaf Focus, and her team for their dedication in providing communication and counseling for those in the deaf community. Deaf Focus is a non-profit that helps the hard-of-hearing community. Click here to learn more.

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