Global Coalition for Language Rights
On this page, we have a British Sign Language and International Sign translation of the Global Coalition for Language Rights (GCLR) draft statement on linguistic human rights. You can find out more about the GCLR here.
SignMorph is working with GCLR to get feedback on these translations. Please provide feedback to Adam Schembri at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
You should be able to use your language wherever and however you want.
Can you use your language at school? How about in hospitals and with doctors? Can you communicate with the government in your language? When you can do all this, you have language rights. If you can’t, then someone took your language rights away.
Can you hear and see your language on TV, radio, books, newspapers, and the internet? Can you pass your language to future generations in the ways you choose? When you can do all this, you have language rights. If you can’t, then someone took your language rights away.
You have language rights when you can use your language without worrying about how other people will treat you. Nobody should insult or attack you because of how you sign, speak, or write. Nobody should say that your language is worse than other languages. If you or your language are treated badly, then someone took your language rights away.
You have language rights when you and your community can make decisions about your language. You can decide what name to call your language. Nobody can tell you you don’t have a real language. If your community can’t make these decisions, then someone took your language rights away.
If someone took your language rights away, you can do something about it. You can defend your language rights. You need to figure out who took your language rights away and tell everyone about it. You can talk to people, protest in the street, use social media, write letters.
Defending language rights can be difficult. Sometimes it is dangerous. But it is also important. People all around the world are working to defend their language rights. It’s good if we all work together – join us!