Deaf Academy Students Join Campaign for British Sign Language (BSL)
Students from the Deaf Academy walked to Exmouth town centre, marching in solidarity with the Deaf community campaigning outside parliament for legal protection for British Sign Language (BSL).
A Bill to give legal protection to BSL was brought forward through a Private Member’s Bill by Labour MP Rosie Cooper today. As there were no objections, it means the Bill has been passed and BSL will now have legal protection – a huge step for the Deaf community.
Students made their own banners and were accompanied by staff on their peaceful protest.
Assistant Principal, Mark Stocks, said:
“The reason we are here today is because all of our students and staff at the Academy are fighting for the equality of BSL and English. We hope today the government pass the second bill of the BSL Act and we will see English and BSL as equals.”
The BSL Act will secure the legal status and increase public awareness of BSL. Government Departments and public bodies would also be required to adhere to new guidance, setting out how they must meet the needs of the estimated 87,000 BSL users in the UK.
It will now go through to committee stage in February and then a final (third) reading in March.
Picture credit: Ike Green-Roberts