Press Release - Immediate

The British Deaf Association welcomes Ms Butler’s intention to raise the issue of legally recognising British Sign Language as an official language in an Early Day Motion. 

We fully support her EDM in asking the Secretary of State finally commit to taking the lead and bring forward a British Sign Language Act to give BSL full legal status.  We concur with her contention that in doing so would both be fair and accord BSL equal parity with Welsh, Gaelic and most recently Cornish; Britain's other indigenous languages upon which Parliament has already conferred legal status.

Dr Terry Riley, Chair of BDA stated: “We are delighted that Ms Butler has decided to mark our 14th Anniversary of BSL being recognised as a language in its own right by requesting that Parliament enacts an Act to confer official status on BSL. We very much hope that the House will take note and consider Ms Butler’s EDM as a priority to ensure that Deaf people are part of the UK’s determination to be a leader in business and trade.”




For more information, please contact:

Contact: Damian Barry
Telephone: 0207 697 4140


About the British Deaf Association

The British Deaf Association (BDA), a registered charity in England, Wales and Scotland, was founded in 1890. BDA is the only Deaf-led organisation that represents the Deaf community. Its two main aims are the promotion of BSL and the right to bi-lingual education 

The BDA stands for Deaf Equality, Access and Freedom of Choice and its work is focused on Deaf people being independent and able to make informed decisions. Deaf people can do anything a hearing person can – they just use a different language to do it. The charity champions the rights of Deaf people to use their first language – British Sign Language, which is a language in its own right, separate and distinct from spoken English.



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