OUTCOME OF ISL RECOGNITION DEBATE IN THE SEANAD
On Wednesday 22 January, the Seanad voted against the second stage of the
Recognition of the Irish Sign Language (ISL) Bill. Senator Mark Daly from
Co. Kerry presented the Bill with support from the Irish Deaf Society and
the Irish Deaf community. Senator Daly said, “As citizens, the members of
the deaf community must be guaranteed the same rights and access to services
as everyone else. Sadly that is not the case.”
After the debate, Senator Daly said “I am disappointed with the final vote
of Tá (yes) 21, Níl (no) 24 in the Seanad yesterday evening (Wednesday). I
will continue to work on the issue of the Recognition of Irish Sign Language
as I feel it is an important matter.”
This aim of the bill was to ensure equal rights for the deaf community in
Ireland and would guarantee that the government no longer continues to
breach the Good Friday Agreement. The main provisions of the bill were: To
require public bodies and government departments to implement action plans
for ISL; To permit the use of Irish Sign Language in Legal proceedings; To
provide for regulations of ISL interpreters; To establish the Irish Sign
Language council; To provide for the establishment of registers.
For more information on the campaign, go to http://senatormarkdaly.org/ or
UN CONVENTION ON THE RIGHTS OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
In the absence of official recognition of ISL, the UN Convention on the
Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) strongly promotes sign language,
reasonable accommodation measures and full and effective participation and
inclusion in society.
According to Amnesty International, the Irish Government signed the CRPD in
December 2007. However, it has yet to ratify it. One obstacle to this
happening is the delay in introducing new national legislation on legal
capacity, the ability to make decisions for one’s self. Deaf organisations
continue to call on the Irish Government to support the ratification of the
Convention and its associated protocols. To see a map of countries that have
signed the convention and optional protocols, go to the following link:
BILATERAL IMPLANT ANNOUNCEMENT
On 18 December 2013, the HSE Service Plan announced it has provisioned for
3.2 million euro for bilateral and simultaneous cochlear implants for
children. This is a result after a long campaign by parents and their
The funding will enable the implementation of a bilateral (simultaneous) and
sequential cochlear implant programme in Ireland. In the future, children
will be fitted with two implants or a 2nd implant if they already have one.
Assessments will be carried out to ensure children meet criteria set down by
the Cochlear Implant team in Beaumont Hospital.
ONLINE RESOURCE LAUNCHED FOR PARENTS, PROFESSIONALS, & POLICYMAKERS
IN DEAF EDUCATION.
While we are on the topic of deaf children, a new online resource has been
launched in the USA to provide objective, evidence-based information for
policy-making practice related to raising and educating Deaf children, in
order to improve them.
Although the website, is based in the USA, it’s still relevant to the Deaf
community here. Its aims are to reach all parties concerned e.g.
professionals, families and policy-makers, to get the best possible
opportunities and futures for deaf children. Quarterly eBulletins will
reflect the most current issues. For further information:
6th WORLD CONGRESS ON MENTAL HEALTH & DEAFNESS 2014
The 6th World Congress on Mental Health and Deafness, organised by the
European Society for Mental Health and Deafness, will be held at Queen’s
University, Belfast from 16 – 19 September 2014.
The theme will be the relationship between human rights and mental health of
Deaf people. All delegates are invited to submit proposals for presentation
(25 minutes including 5 minute Q&A) by 8 April 2014. At least one presenter
must be registered with the congress by the review date in order to make a
Irish Sign Language, British Sign Language and International Sign Language
interpreters and Speech to Text Report will be provided.
For further information go to: http://www.wcmhd2014.org/
SAVINGS ON HEALTH INSURANCE
There has been talk of increases to health insurances premiums and this may
have an impact on the Deaf and hard of hearing individuals. If you are
renewing your cover, check out the following:
http://www.hia.ie or http://www.
KDRC provides services to Deaf and hard of hearing people at county level
and contributes to national issues of equality, access and rights.
Kerry Deaf Resource Centre
4 Gas Tce, Tralee
Mobile (text): 087 633 4687
Fax: 066 712 0386
Tel: 066 712 0399