The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD) was the first international human rights instrument that recognised sign languages as equal to spoken languages, and it obliges national governments to promote, protect and recognise sign language rights.
The UN CRPD is a fundamentally important tool when advocating for the official recognition of national sign languages, and deaf people rights. Article 21 of the UN CRPD specifically calls its State Parties to take all appropriate measures to ensure that persons with disabilities can exercise the right to freedom of expression and opinion, including the freedom to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas on an equal basis with others and through all forms of communication of their choice, including by accepting and facilitating the use of sign languages, as well as recognising and promoting the use of sign languages. Article 30 of the UN CRPD also specifically highlights that deaf people are entitled, on an equal basis with others, to recognition and support of their specific cultural and linguistic identity, including sign languages and deaf culture.
Many National Associations of the Deaf used the UN CRPD as an advocacy tool at national level when advocating for the official recognition of their national sign language(s) in their countries or when improving access to sign language rights. However, not all national laws are equally strong which leads to a lack of access to fundamental rights. Accordingly, EUD is organising this webinar to share good practices on how to advocate for an ambitious implementation of the UN CRPD for deaf sign language users and to discuss how the UN CRPD must be used as an advocacy tool at national level.
This webinar will be available in International Sign and spoken English. It will also provide live captioning in English.