Celebrate International Week of the Deaf with NAD
International Week of the Deaf (IWD) is celebrated annually during the last full week of September. IWD this year is observed during September 20-26, 2010, with celebrations by the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), as well as national associations of the deaf and individuals worldwide.
WFD has encouraged its national members to focus on deaf education, which continues to be one of the most contested issues in the history of deaf people worldwide. WFD now calls upon individuals to sign an official "New Era" petition that calls upon all nations and people of the world to remember history and ensure that educational programmes accept and respect all languages, including sign languages, and all forms of communication.
On July 19, 2010 the International Congress on the Education of the Deaf (ICED) opened its 21st Congress in Vancouver, British Columbia with a historic "New Era" programme that formally rejected the resolutions passed at its 2nd Congress (also known as the 1880 Milan Congress) that discouraged the use of sign language in the education of the deaf and employment of deaf educators and professionals. Click here, here and here to learn more about action taken by the NAD, links to the resultant ICED press release, introduction, and statement of principle and accord for the future, as well as an update following the congress.
Established in the same year as the 1880 Milan Congress, the NAD was shaped by deaf leaders who believed in the right of the American deaf community to use sign language, to congregate on issues important to them, and to have its interests represented at the national level. These beliefs remain true to this day, with American Sign Language as a core value.
Representatives from the NAD recently took part in DeaFestival in Horse Cave, KY and will take part in several events in observance of International Week of the Deaf (IWD):
The NAD also wishes to also recognize the many International Week of the Deaf (also known as Deaf Awareness Week) activities hosted by state associations of the deaf and community organizations across the nation. Celebrations are also held throughout the year in the United States of America.