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Bill for Recognition of ISL
enters important Phase!


The process of recognition of Irish Sign Language (ISL) is entering an important phase. The Government is proposing the deletion of large parts of the proposed Bill, which could result in an Act which only gives symbolic recognition to ISL. Now is a key time for parents of Deaf children and members of the Deaf Community  to contact their local representatives about the Bill.

We want an Act that not only recognises ISL, but one that makes a real difference to the daily lives of Deaf people. An Act that delivers fair and equal access to public services and citizen services, so that Deaf people can participate fully in society and their local communities.

The Government are proposing the deletion of large parts of the Bill which would give Deaf people the Right to access not only public services, but also the Right to communication support, so that Deaf people are empowered to  go about their personal business as ordinary citizens of a true Republic. Without the Right of access to sign language interpretation, how can a Deaf person make an appointment with their local bank manager or make a will with their solicitor? These are basic citizen services that are not available to many Deaf people as they have to pay the solicitor AND the interpreter.

Today we are seeking your support in the area of Education and access to ISL, which is key to the future of Deaf children and the Deaf Community.


ISL is used by 40,000 people
in Ireland every day Andrew Geary.

The Right to Education

The Right to Education is enshrined in our Constitution, but this Right has not been available to Deaf children on an equal basis. Again, the Government is proposing to delete the specific section of the Bill that seeks to ensure that ISL will be available in schools for those children that need it. 

Andrew Geary, a parent of a Deaf child who has been actively pursuing appropriate access to ISL in school for his son, has been tasked with drafting sections for the Education Section of the amended Bill.

Andrew has been advised that hand written letters from ordinary citizens  and organisations to local TDs and Senators would be very beneficial to the campaign at this point. (See link below of a draft letter).

Andrew is also seeking suggestions and inputs directly from any parents, educators, advocates etc involved with the education of Deaf children that will assist him in drafting a section on education for the proposed Bill. You can forward your ideas and thoughts directly to Andrew at this link:



Draft Letter

Download File
64 kb
Download File

Related to this story:

Parents secure sign language support in school


ISL Bill:






more...Hearing loss costs an estimated €2.2bn every year in Ireland.


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