Thank you for contacting me about making British Sign Language (BSL) an official language of the UK.
Deafness or being hard of hearing should not be a barrier to participating in society and I understand your desire to see BSL as an official language of the UK.
It is clear to me that the Government and the public sector should lead by example in ensuring that important communication is accessible to all. That is why I am glad that public health information has been available in many alternative formats including BSL during the on-going Covid-19 pandemic. Covid-19 press briefings with BSL have been available on the Downing Street social media channels and the BBC News channel has provided live BSL interpretation for the briefings.
BSL, more broadly, may also be offered in schools as part of the school curriculum. I understand that the Department for Education is working to develop draft content for a potential GCSE in BSL, and that a consultation on the content is due to published this year.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.
Sally-Ann Hart MP