Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF), a youth development organisation committed to the promotion of equitable and inclusive society has called on government to improve the quality of life of persons with hearing-impairment, especially the youth.
A statement issued by the Foundation on the commemoration of International Day of Sign Language (IDSL), petitioned the government to do this “by developing and implementing a proactive policy that ensures that people with hearing impairments are not left out in communication.”
“We believe that, improving the quality of life for the hearing impaired cannot and must no longer be postponed as the nation strives to attain the goal 16 of the Sustainable Development Goals, which inter alia, states the need to ‘…promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development,’” the statement said.
Among other demands, YBF called on government to through the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection (MoGCSP), sponsor a bill that makes it a prerequisite for Ministries, Department and Agencies as well as Metropolitan, Municipal District Assemblies (MMDAs) to have sign language interpretation facilities in place to facilitate communication of hearing-impaired citizens who have equal rights to their services.
They also ask government to create more space and expand the existing training opportunities for sign language interpreters in Ghana as well as address the barriers to the academic development of hearing-impaired youth to secondary and tertiary educational institutions.
They further call on The National Media Commission (NMC) to guarantee the introduction and enforcement of sign language interpretation on all television programmes.