Celebrating New Zealand Sign Language Week at Parliament
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Celebrating New Zealand Sign Language Week at Parliament

November 16, 2019

A very warm welcome to New Zealand Sign Language Week and of course to Parliament’s involvement in Sign Language Week. My name is David Carter and I’m very privileged to be the Speaker of the New Zealand House of Representatives. With me today is Bridgette, a sign language interpreter and here at Parliament we want to take this opportunity of celebrating New Zealand sign language week. We want to do what we can to include all New Zealanders, deaf and those who are not deaf, in what happens in our Parliament so that everybody can be more involved in our democracy. I do a daily video when Parliament sits, which is available on our parliamentary website. This week it is being signed. As well as part of the celebration we also have Question Time, that vital part of our democratic system being signed also. It’s being done in a room very close to the Debating Chamber then immediately into the chamber via a video link and also on the right-hand side of TV screens for those people who are watching parliamentary Question Time. Select Committees can also request Signers to come and assist and interpret Select Committee proceedings over this week or at any time in the future. We take this opportunity to have these wonderful skilled Signers within our Parliament interpreting what the politicians are saying so that all New Zealanders, deaf or non-deaf, can partake in our democratic system. Best wishes.

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