The Irish Sign Language Act 2018 was signed into law on Christmas Eve 2018 by President Michael D. Higgins. Senator Daly first introduced this Bill to the House of the Oireachtas in 2013.
The Recognition of Irish Sign Language for the Deaf enshrines the right to access state services in Irish Sign Language the primary Language of the Deaf community in Ireland.
Members of the Irish Deaf Community have been suffering extreme marginalization by the State for some time now. This new law means that Irish deaf citizens will now be able to access State services in their own language.In addition, it puts an onus onto State agencies such as hospitals, schools and the Courts to make services available for the Irish deaf community.
This Bill had been hard fought and the rights that it will give members of the Irish deaf community have been hard won but ultimately, this Act means so much to many nationwide and is good for society and good for Ireland’s deaf citizens. You can read a full transcript of the Act below.