Tuesday, April 24, 2012


referral: remisión; derivación

as in, information and referral line, or referral to a specialist. derivación is very spainish :) (ie, Spanish from Spain) and I'm not sure that, say, low literacy folks from Mexico would understand it, though apparently it is technically correct (though it sounds odd to me because it is a false cognate).  Many thanks to the fabulous Ricardo Chaparro Pacheco for recommending remisión as the more common Latin American version. As he puts it "To refer someone significaría remitir a alguien a. Dada la noción de "especialidad" que implica, Remisión es ampliamente usada en relación con servicios médicos, pero también aplica para enviar a alguien a una consulta o ante una autoridad legal, o ante una institución particular."

I know a lot of hotlines in the US, including the Tenants Union line I staffed in Spanish, use recomendación instead to be more widely understood, but I think that can also lead to misunderstandings. Folks might thing that because I'm recomendandolos they'll get special attention when they get to the HUD office, or that I'm saying that this particular attorney is a good one, as opposed to simply being one who takes tenant cases.