The 21st International Congress on Education of the Deaf (ICED) took place
in Vancouver, Canada from July 18–22. The theme of the conference was
“Partners In Education”. The conference was accessible to Deaf people with a
team of over 30 Deaf and hearing interpreters.

The congress started with the presentation of a document – A New Era: Deaf
Participation and Collaboration. This document rejected the resolutions of
the 1880 Milan Congress, which banned the use of sign language from
educational programs for deaf children. The banning of sign language has had
a long-lasting and detrimental affect on the quality of education for deaf
children around the globe, leading to a lack of equality for Deaf adults and
the participation of Deaf people in society being severely compromised.  You
can watch a presentation about the New Era document in International
Sign at this weblink:

According to the World Federation of the Deaf, the New Era document
“expressed deep regret for the detrimental effects of the Milan resolutions,
and promoted the acceptance of and respect for all languages and forms of
communication in educational programs.” The Document makes a commitment to
working with national governments to adhere to the principles of the United
Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). This
Convention states that sign language is a human right and that education
includes full acquisition of language, academic, practical and social

The New Era Document also endorses the resolutions adopted by the World
Federation of the Deaf at its 15th Congress in 2007 for equal and
appropriate access to a multi-lingual, multi-cultural education; inclusion
of Sign Languages as legitimate languages equal to the nation’s spoken
languages; the inclusion of Deaf people in all aspects of education from the
very onset; and the promotion of human rights for all.

Markku Jokinen, President of the WFD stated:
“Education, which is much more than just scores, curriculum, and pedagogies,
means nurturing deaf children to become full human beings with rights,
knowledge and skills.  It means enabling them to their maximum potential as
individuals in today’s society.  We must also recognize and value diversity
within the Deaf community – Deaf, hard of hearing, Deaf-blind — with full
rights to language, culture, community and choices.

The tremendous support for the New Era Accord shown at this Congress is
inspiring.  However, our work has only just begun.  It will take time,
patience and wisdom to sustain permeating change.  We all have been hurt,
excluded, marginalized and angry at hearing people for the damage visited
upon us over generations, 130 years since Milan.  We need to forgive
ourselves and those others, to become spiritually liberated to forge forward
with new alliances towards a positive, productive future together.”

At the Closing Ceremony a book of signatures in support of the New Era
document was passed on to Markku Jokinen, who will collect signatures at the
16th Congress of the World Federation of the Deaf in Durban, South Africa
next year. The book will then go to the next ICED Congress in Greece in

For information about the Conference and to read the New Era document see
the ICED website:
The WFD’s report from the ICED congress is here:

The German Deaf Association has created a short survey to examine the
situation of Deaf people around Europe. The survey is available in English,
German and International Sign.

To fill out the survey please visit their website:

For any questions related to the survey please contact:
[email protected]

The 8th Supporting Deaf People online conference will take place from 9-12th
February 2011. There will be two themes: 1) Communication, Education and the
Future and 2) Industrialisation, corporization, charity and control.

The organizers are looking for papers with possible topics including, but
not limited to:

*       Deaf perspectives on interpreting and communication;
*       Childhood and deafness;
*       Communication Issues;
*       Education;
*       Early childhood interpreting;
*       The impact of cochlear implants on the deaf community and language;
*       Interpreting in specialist settings;
*       Who controls deaf people?;
*       Who controls interpreters/interpreting?;
*       The industrialisation/corporization of interpreting;
*       Connecting with the Deaf community;
*       How developing countries are being affected/empowered by western
*       The Deaf experience in developing countries;
*       Charity and modern deaf communities
*       The impact of interpreting on deaf communities;
*       Empowering/building strong deaf communities;

Open topic (papers will be selected on their merits and interest to the

Organisers are also interested in alternative presentations, not just
papers. For example, videos, discussions between two presenters, lead
discussions, workshops and seminars. If you have an idea, but are not sure
if it can work in an online format, contact SDP to see if you can find a way
to make it work!

Please send your submission in the form of a proposed title, an
abstract/outline of your ideas (approx. 200 words) and a short biography to
[email protected]

Kerry Deaf Resource Centre
4 Gas Tce, Tralee

Mobile (text): 087 633 4687
E-mail: [email protected]

Fax: 066 712 0386
Tel: 066 712 0399