Sign language is the bridge between hearing people and those with hearing disabilities, Human Resources Minister Zoltán Balog said in his address at the 3rd international conference of the World Federation of the Deaf in Budapest on Thursday.
Held from November 8 to 10, the conference is entitled “Full integration through sign language!” and hosts around 700 people from over 80 countries.
Balog said Hungary’s government is making efforts so that all disabled citizens should feel themselves appreciated and fully accepted. He noted that Hungary had been the first to ratify the UN convention on the rights of people with disabilities, saying that deaf people have the right to access to information in sign language in every area of life. The government guarantees the right to sign language education and has supported video interpretation in sign language with several hundred million forints, the minister said.
Ádám Kósa, president of the Hungarian Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (SINOSZ), said that sign language is the only means to fully integrate deaf people into society.
SINOSZ is working for nationwide bilingual education in Hungarian and sign language for hearing-impaired children, he said.