Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has addressed the 3rd International Conference of the World Federation of the Deaf and stated that everyone has the right to live their life using their own language, without restrictions.
Drawing a parallel with sign language, the prime minister highlighted the uniqueness of the Hungarian language. He described Hungarian as a special treasure, he noted that one third of the Hungarian nation lives in minority communities outside the country’s borders, struggling from day-to-day to use their own language.
The prime minister said he finds it remarkable that deaf people are fighting for the cause of sign language and want the right to use their own sign language in every country in the world and in every walk of life and to promote and develop deaf culture.
PM Orbán told his audience that they had come to a country where the deaf and hard of hearing have worked extremely hard to be considered a valued element in society.
“In our country, the deaf have the right to use their own language in every area of life,” the prime minister said. As an example he said that Hungarian television channels are required – at their own expense – to enable people with disabilities to access all their programming.
Among the tasks still to be accomplished, the prime minister mentioned the introduction of bilingual education for the deaf, noting that the Research Institute of Linguistics at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences has already started the preparations for this.
He also pointed out that young deaf people must be enabled to acquire skills and knowledge which provide them with guaranteed access to the labor market.