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International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL) observed on September 23, 2020

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International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL) - September 23 2020

United Nations’ (UN) celebrates the International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL) annually on September 23. It is observed to support and protect the linguistic identity and cultural diversity of all deaf people and other sign language users.The year 2020 marks the 3rd edition.

i.The Theme for International Day of Sign Language 2020 is – “Sign Languages are for everyone!”.

ii.The day corresponds with International Week of the Deaf, which is taking place from 21st September – 27th September, 2020.

Background:

i.The IDSL was first celebrated in 2018 as part of the International Week of the Deaf.

ii.The proposal for IDSL came from World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), which is a federation of 135 national associations of deaf people and represents approximately 70 million deaf people’s human rights.

iii.The choice of the date commemorates the date on which WFD was established in 1951.

Sign Language:

i.Sign Language is a form of visual language, it uses hand gestures and body language to convey meaning.

ii.According to WFD, there are 72 million deaf people worldwide out of which 80% live in developing countries. They use more than 300 different sign languages.

Third Indian Sign Language Competition 2020:

i.On Occasion of the Sign Language Day, Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC), Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Divyangjan Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India organised the Third Indian Sign Language Competition 2020.

ii.The competition was held in the following areas Joke Telling, Poetry/Song, Essay.

iii.ISLRTC invited entries from Diploma in Indian Sign Language Interpreting (DISLI) & Diploma in Teaching Indian Sign Language (DTISL).

Indian Sign Language Dictionary:

i.Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC) launched the second edition of Indian Sign Language Dictionary in February, 2019.

ii.The Dictionary includes 6, 000 words and was developed by ISLRTC under the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment.

About World Federation of the Deaf (WFD):

President – Joseph J Murray
Headquarters – Helsinki, Finland