International Day of Sign Languages 2022: Date, Theme, History, Significance, Interesting Facts & More
Every year 23rd of September is celebrated as the International Day of Sign Language 2022. The Indian National Implementation Committee (NIC) headed by Home Minister approved the Sign Language Day event to be conducted and celebrated by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities), under the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebration.
What is the history of the International Day of Sign Language?
The World Federation of Deaf was founded on 23, September 1951. And later, to remember this milestone International Day of Sign Language is celebrated on the same day. The UN General Assembly marked this day to raise awareness of the importance of sign language to sow empower people with disabilities about their human rights.
What is the theme for International Day of Sign Language?
The theme for Sign Language Day-2022 is “Sign Languages Unite us”. Under this theme, we sign onto a declaration of support for sign languages as an essential human right for deaf people, and sign for human rights! The idea is to recognize and promote the different national sign languages around the world with the collective efforts of deaf communities, governments, and civil society representatives.
What is the significance of the International Day of Sign Language?
The key significance of the Sign Language Day celebration on a large scale is to sensitize the general public about the importance of sign languages, and the information and communication accessibility for persons with disabilities. Sign language is just not a mode of communication but it also is vital in creating employment and vocational training for persons with disabilities.
Facts about Sign Language
The world is home to approximately 72 million deaf people. And more than 80% of the population live in developing countries, and collectively use more than 300 different sign languages.
Sign languages basically are natural languages, structurally distinct from spoken languages. Some facts about Indian sign languages are:
- Sign language is known as a visual mode of communication
- All countries have their own versions of sign language
- Many deaf people have ‘name signs’, better to be understood as nicknames
- Sign languages have their own form of grammar.
- People learn sign language in the same way they acquire spoken language
- Indian Sign Language is still not recognized as an official language in India.
- Sign language is just not about the movement of hands.
- However, the direction of the palm can change the entire meaning.
At present, there are no institutes in India which teach ISL formally. And it's very important to bridge the gap within communities