INTERNATIONAL WEEK OF THE DEAF 2018
International Week of the Deaf (IWDeaf)
is an initiative of the WFD and was first launched in 1958 in Rome, Italy. It is celebrated annually by the global Deaf Community on the last full week of September to commemorate the same month the first World Congress of the WFD was held. IWDeaf is celebrated through various activities by respective Deaf Communities worldwide. These activities call for participation and involvement of various stakeholders including families, peers, governmental bodies, professional sign language interpreters, and DPOs.
International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL)
has been adopted by the United Nations General Assembly and will be celebrated annually on 23 September beginning in 2018. The objective of the IDSL is to raise awareness on sign languages and strengthen the status about sign languages. This event also will take place as part of the International Week of the Deaf (IWDeaf), which is celebrated on the last full week of September.
With Sign Language, Everyone is Included!
Reach out and influence
as many governments as possible to legally fulfill their obligations.
Promote deaf people as unique
in having both perspectives of disability and linguistic minority and that sign language and deaf culture strengthens multilingualism and are means of promoting, protecting and preserving diversity of languages and cultures globally.
Reflect the principles of the CRPD
in its recognition of sign languages as equal to spoken languages. Sign languages are fully-fledged natural languages, structurally distinct from spoken languages, alongside which they coexist.
Emphasise sign language as a critical prerequisite
to the full realisation of human rights for deaf people. Early access to sign language and services in sign language, including quality education available in sign language, is vital to the growth and development of the deaf individual and critical to the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals.
Stress “Nothing about us, Without us”
when working with Deaf Communities, the principle ‘Nothing about us, Without Us’ must be integrated.
WHY IS IDSL AND IWDEAF IMPORTANT?
A joint effort, IDSL and IWDeaf takes place once a year for one week to seek highly concerted global advocacy to raise awareness about the Deaf Community, sign languages and the rights of deaf individuals. The objective is to focus on gathering together, becoming united, and showing that unity to the rest of the world.
PROMOTE EARLY ACCESS TO
IDSL and IWDeaf strives to promote sign language as a critical prerequisite toward the full realisation of human rights for deaf people and to highlight topics that merit attention. Early access to sign language and services provided in sign language are vital to the growth and development of deaf individuals. This mission is also critical for the achievement of internationally agreed development goals.
UNIQUE PERSPECTIVES AND
IDSL and IWDeaf supports deaf people as unique in their perspectives of disability and linguistic minority. Sign language and deaf culture are recognised as multilingualism with a means to promote, protect and preserve language diversity and cultural heritages from around the world.
Structurally distinct from spoken languages, sign languages are fully fledged natural languages. Emphasis on the principle “nothing about us without us” should be considered when working with deaf communities. Refer to the principles of the CRPD for recognition on how sign languages and spoken languages are equal.
The partnership shared between IDSL and IWDeaf encourages international unity through consistent, coordinated and widespread mobilisation. Through good media exposure, this will ensure that the key messages of the campaign maintains its visibility and cohesiveness
SPREAD THE MOVEMENT
Special thanks to Tony Clews for the in-kind-service in filming and editing the International Sign Videos.