We The Deaf People - WTDP - OREGON
Our rights, our citizenship, our future
As members of the Deaf community, we want to be recognized as a linguistic minority, to be accorded the same kind of recognition and respect given to other ethnic groups. We want to preserve American Sign Language, which is the primary language for many of us.
The right to have access to, learn, and use ASL, is not a privilege or frill, but a basic human right for all deaf people—children and adults. As U.S. citizens, we insist on fair and equal treatment. We want our language and Constitutional rights respected.
We want Deaf people to be portrayed in a positive light in mainstream media, showing that we are healthy, intelligent, successful persons, instead of being described in negative terms with expressions such as hearing loss, hearing-impaired, and hearing-challenged, and with adjectives such as silent and isolated.
We the Deaf People is planned as a humanitarian organization, a watchdog, and a Deaf-rights advocacy group. We have five basic goals:
1.Safeguarding the language rights of Deaf people. Recognition of ASL as a full-fledged language would help to obviate some of the problems we've been grappling with for the past century. This is our major humanitarian mission.
2.Fair representation—schools for the deaf, businesses, organizations, agencies serving a Deaf population, Federal agencies overseeing testing and intervention with deaf children, should have Deaf people on their boards of directors. Schools for the deaf should have a Deaf majority on their boards.
3.Educating the public and government about Deaf concerns, language rights, etc., while encouraging Deaf people to register, vote, and become politically involved.
4.Working with current Deaf and other civil-rights organizations to better serve the Deaf community, we plan to develop cooperation and coordination between our organizations.
5.Working with and educating local government, law-enforcement agencies, courts, hospitals, etc., to establish better relationships with the Deaf community and enhance the lives of Deaf people.
© 2013-2016 We the Deaf People
- American Sign Language