Parliament to hire sign language interpreters

National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale
National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale. [File, Standard]
Parliament will allocate funds in the next financial year to hire sign language interpreters, National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale has said.

Mr Duale (right) said the move was aimed at facilitating the committee sessions and other proceedings in the August House.

He made the remarks before the House Labour Committee when he presented a petition by the Kenyan Deaf Community on Tuesday.

The lobby group wants the National Assembly to appropriate adequate funds to support the promotion and development of sign language.

It further seeks to have health workers trained on sign language, as well as have the Judiciary hire the experts.

The petitioners said there were few health workers who could communicate in sign language, thus making it difficult for the deaf to access healthcare services.

“The use of the Kenyan Sign Language by health workers, for example, birth attendants and in the media when airing health advertisements such as polio campaigns, will enhance the right to health by the deaf and hard of hearing,” read the petition.

Additionally, the petitioners urged Parliament to amend the Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013, to provide for establishment of a special fund to facilitate research in Kenya Sign Language development and training.

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sign language interpreterMajority Leader Aden Duale